The Scale and Nature of Child Sexual Abuse: Review of Evidence (June 2021)

“The Scale and Nature of Child Sexual Abuse: Review of Evidence” by Kairika Karsna and Liz Kelly of the Centre of Expertise on Child Sexual Abuse is an analysis of the scale and nature of child sexual abuse across England and Wales using official and agency data from 2017/8.

It “finds far more children experience sexual abuse than are currently being protected and the latest data suggests the gap between recorded experiences and experiences of abuse could be widening. In 2019/20, England saw the largest drop in child protection plans for sexual abuse in 18 years – and following eight years of increased recording of child sexual abuse offences by police, there was a levelling off in 2019/20, with 87,992 identifiable CSA offences recorded. The CSA Centre estimates that at least 15% of girls and 5% of boys experience child sexual abuse before the age of 16. The majority of child sexual abuse is hidden; never reported or uncovered by an official agency.”