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One size doesn’t fit all. Matthew Black

Why there is no such thing as the Muslim ‘community’

Cases of extremist violence and sexual exploitation have caused significant anxiety in the UK in recent years and politicians are continually looking for ways to identify how these things happen and how…
Convicted sex offender and former Marist Brother Gregory Sutton (left) tries to hide his face while leaving a Royal Commission into child sexual abuse hearing. AAP/Dean Lewins

Breaking the silence about white Australian men’s abuse of children

I have seen firsthand how child sexual abuse is rife in every part of the Australian community – but only sometimes is that abuse reported in full colour. It probably won’t surprise you if I say that I’ve…
The establishment takes care of its own. James Thomson

Woolf’s out but can anyone be trusted with this inquiry?

As a second chairwoman resigns from the UK government’s inquiry into historic child abuse allegations, it’s clear that questions need to be asked about who should lead this investigation and what its remit…
Over half of Australia’s imported goods come from the Asia Pacific, which has 78 million child labourers, including these three in a Bangladesh balloon factory. EPA/Abir Abdhullah

Global supply chains link us all to shame of child and forced labour

The fragmentation of global production has dramatically increased the length and complexity of supply chains. The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) estimates that more than…
Foster parents often receive inadequate emotional and financial support. prudkov/Shutterstock

Foster parents need more support to care for vulnerable children

When children are deemed at risk of abuse or neglect and are removed from the family home, they are placed in out-of-home care, either with foster parents, relatives or in residential facilities. The latter…
People with complex trauma appear like they are always anticipating or responding to a threat. file404/Shutterstock

Complex trauma: how abuse and neglect can have life-long effects

Experiencing trauma has significant implications for mental health. We’ve known this for some time but particularly since the early 1970s after observing and studying the effects of war on American servicemen…
Some images are illegal even to see, an online crime scene. mangostock/Shutterstock

When a drawing or cartoon image can land you in jail

A cartoon can land you in court, as happened to a man recently convicted of possessing non-photographic images – cartoons, drawings – of a sexual nature featuring children. Clearly child pornography, more…
Adrian Peterson has been indicted for injury to a child. Arvee5.0

There is no debate about hitting children – it’s just wrong

US sports continue to struggle with the controversies surrounding Ray Rice’s domestic violence case, and the arrest of Slava Voynov on suspicion of domestic violence. But what has not been a matter of…
Four-year-old Chloe Valentine sustained injuries and died after being made to ride and repeatedly crash her 50-kilogram motorbike. AAP Image/South Australian Supreme Court

Abuse and neglect: Australia’s child protection ‘crisis’

The tragic death of four-year old Chloe Valentine in South Australia has raised concerns that the state’s child protection system is in crisis. Following a history of abuse and neglect, Chloe’s mother…
Children in state care need stability in their home and school life to develop social attachments and a sense of belonging. Wikimedia/Ranveig

Law offers better care for abused children, given enough support

Children who have been taken into state care need timely decisions on whether to separate them from their birth families. Delayed decisions means leaving children who have suffered abuse and neglect in…
Violence that happens behind closed doors and within families is finally being recognised as a crime – not just a “domestic”. Jaybird/Flickr

Violent words, not just deeds, leave a lasting mark on our kids

She showed me the cigarette burns on her arms. Her eyes seemed empty as she slumped in the chair, answering questions with defeated shrugs. Finally she explained that her stepfather had held her down and…

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