Safeguarding News July 2022

Welcome to SAFEcic's news round up from July 2022.
It is shaping up to be a memorable summer and not necessarily for the right reasons. Travel chaos at UK airports and ports, soaring temperatures UK-wide, hose pipe bans, wildfires and the burgeoning cost of living crisis. All conspired to make July a particularly challenging month for everyone.
Here at SAFE we realise that our newsletter is unlikely to lighten anyone's mood owing to the sober nature of what we report, however we hope it may serve as a welcome distraction for your thought processes, taking your mind off this incessant heat!
One of this month's essential reads is the update to Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 which should be read in conjunction with Keeping Children Safe in Education. More details below...

Don't forget to check out our latest training schedule (below) and please feel free to share this email with your colleagues and they too can join our newsletter database.

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Free Consultations
We have also extended the availability of our free 30 minutes advice and support consultations until the end of August 2022. Seize your opportunity now and email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to book your free appointment.

Services Update
SAFEcic is also accepting many more bookings for its face to face safeguarding training and audit services. There is also a packed calendar of blended learning events available to book for your organisation. The courses are a very cost effective way of training your staff and volunteers. 



SAFEcic Blended Learning Training Calendar 

Leading on Child and Adult Safeguarding

Safeguarding Training, Leading on Child and Adult. Online course plus Zoom

Wed, 21 September 2022

10:30 – 12:00 BST

Safeguarding Training, Leading on Child and Adult. Online course plus Zoom

Wed, 9 November 2022

10:30 – 12:00 GMT

Safeguarding Training, Leading on Child and Adult. Online course plus Zoom

Tue, 13 December 2022

10:30 – 12:00 GMT

Standard Child and Adult Safeguarding

Safeguarding Training, Standard Child and Adult. Online Course plus Zoom

Tue, 27 September 2022

10:30 – 12:00 BST

Safeguarding Training, Standard Child and Adult. Online Course plus Zoom

Wed, 23 November 2022

10:30 – 12:00 GMT

Safeguarding: Trustees’ legal responsibilities

Safeguarding: Trustees' legal responsibilities. Online Course plus Zoom

Tue, 04 October 2022

10:00 – 11:30 BST

Safeguarding: Trustees' legal responsibilities. Online Course plus Zoom

Thu, 8 December 2022

10:00 – 11:30 GMT

Safer Recruitment

Safer Recruitment Training. Online course plus 2 Hr Live Online training

Thu, 15 September 2022

10:00 – 12:00 BST

Safer Recruitment Training. Online course plus 2 Hr Live Online training

Tue, 29 November 2022

10:00 – 12:00 GMT

SAFE Free Resource Hubs

SAFEcic's free hub resources by setting have been relocated to their new home and are now available through the main menu. Alternately you can bookmark the links below:

Education | Dental | Charities GP & Primary Medical Services | Fath Groups | Entertainment & Leisure | Working Overseas |

Legislation & Bills

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England, Wales and Scotland

New laws to protect disabled people in England, Scotland and Wales when travelling in taxis and PHVs.

New laws will ensure the 13.7 million disabled people in England, Scotland and Wales receive the assistance they need and will not be charged over the odds when using taxis and private hire vehicles (PHVs).

The new Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles (Disabled Persons) Act 2022, which came into force on 28 June, is the most significant change to taxi accessibility legislation since the Equality Act was introduced 12 years ago.

The 2022 Act amends the Equality Act 2010 to place duties on taxi drivers and PHV drivers and operators, so any disabled person has specific rights and protections to be transported and receive assistance when using a taxi or PHV without being charged extra.

As part of the amendments, taxi and PHV drivers could face fines of up to £1,000 if they fail to provide reasonable mobility assistance to disabled passengers taking a pre-booked vehicle.

This will also ensure that visually impaired passengers will be assisted by drivers to help them identify or find the vehicle. There will also be a duty for local authorities to publicly identify wheelchair-accessible vehicles in their fleets.

The measures will apply to drivers in England, Scotland and Wales and will help to provide consistency of experience for affected passengers.

The act was a Private Members’ Bill introduced by Jeremy Wright QC MP. Another change will mean that even drivers granted exemption from assistance duties on account of medical needs must still accept the carriage of disabled passengers and will not be able to charge them more than others.

Read the Access to taxis and private hire vehicles for disabled users guidance.

Statutory Guidance
England and Wales

New statutory guidance on identifying and responding to domestic abuse and its impact on victims has been published, 8 July 2022, by the Home Office.

The statutory guidance applies to England. It applies in Wales only to matters that are reserved to the UK government – policing and criminal, civil and family justice

The Domestic Abuse Act 2021 statutory guidance will ensure victims are supported to access frontline support that meets the complexity of their needs, by ensuring that the police, healthcare practitioners and local authorities have the necessary tools and information to offer tailored support to victims and survivors. The guidance supports the implementation of the Act’s wide-ranging statutory definition of domestic abuse and provides guidance to those working with victims, including the police and local authorities.

The statutory definition introduced in the Act incorporates a range of abuse beyond physical violence, including controlling or coercive behaviour, emotional, and, for the first time, economic abuse. The Domestic Abuse Act 2021 also recognises children who see, hear or experience domestic abuse as victims in their own right.
This new statutory guidance goes further to ensure that the complexity of domestic abuse is properly understood to support a coherent ‘whole system’ response to supporting victims and survivors, including children. By setting out best practice approaches and encouraging multi-agency working, a whole system response will deliver the step change needed to tackle this abhorrent crime, recognising that everybody has a role to play in supporting victims and survivors of domestic abuse.


Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 has been updated

Source Department for Education published on this site Wednesday 6 July 2022
The Department for Education publishes Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018. The current guidance was most recently updated on the 1st July 2022. The host page for the guidance says:
This is a factual update to Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 to reflect recent changes to legislation, including:

  • Integrated Care Boards: from 1 July 2022, integrated care boards have replaced clinical commissioning groups as a result of the Health and Care Act 2022;
  • Public Health England: has now been replaced by the UK Health Security Agency and the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities (OHID), which is part of the Department of Health and Social Care, and by the UK Health Security Agency. The Chief Public Health Nurse role has transferred to OHID;
  • Domestic Abuse Act 2021: references to the Domestic Abuse Bill should be read as the Domestic Abuse Act 2021;
  • UK GDPR: references to the GDPR should be read as the UK GDPR. The UK GDPR is the retained EU law version of the GDPR. The UK GDPR sits alongside the Data Protection Act 2018.

Note: there have been no changes to the current document which still contains the old terminology.

Keeping Children Safe in Education published September 2021, should be read alongside Working Together to Safeguard Children. This guidance will come into force 1 September 2022.

CPS Legal Guidance
Football hate crime: CPS legal guidance on football banning orders

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) vows to use football banning orders to those convicted of online hate crime connected to the game and prevent them from attending matches. The new orders allow the CPS to ask the courts for tougher penalties for so-called fans intent on hateful conduct.

The CPS has recently spearheaded a campaign to ensure that football spectators are aware of the consequences of the disgusting behaviour by a minority of fans.

The new legal provisions will allow banning orders to be made for abuse involving racial or other hateful hostility which occurs online. Previously football banning orders could only apply to in-person offences. The additional provisions will provide prosecutors with the means to invite the courts to provide tougher sentences for hate crime alongside their asking for a sentence uplift because of the aggravated nature of a hate crime.

The legal guidance further instructs prosecutors to ask the court for banning orders in all instances where they are available, unless a court considers that there are particular circumstances relating to the offence or to the offender which would make it unjust in all the circumstances to do so.

Reports, Reviews, Inquiries, Consultations and Research

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Governments plans for childcare ratios in England

The Government has published a consultation on changing childcare ratios in England, proposing to “improve the cost, choice and availability of childcare.”

The Insight paper explains the current childcare ratios in England, and how these compare to other countries.

The Department for Education’s (DfE) consultation, which opened on 4 July, seeks views on:

  • Changing the mandatory staff to child ratio for two-year olds in early years settings from 1:4 to 1:5;
  • Increasing flexibility for childminders, so they can care for more than the maximum of three children under the age of five “if they are caring for siblings of children they already care for, or if the childminder is caring for their own baby or child”; and
  • Making the Early Years Foundation Stage Statutory Framework (EYFS) explicit that “adequate supervision” means children “must be in sight and hearing of an adult” while they are eating or drinking.

The Government says the change to the ratio for two-year-olds could reduce childcare costs by up to £40 for a family paying £265 per week.


The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in Telford (IITCSE website.)

In response to the publication of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in Telford West Mercia Police have posted this statement:

“We are making an unequivocal apology to victims and survivors of Child Sexual Exploitation in Telford for past failings by the force.

This evening the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in Telford (IITCSE) is published. The Inquiry, which was commissioned by Telford and Wrekin Council in April 2018, found that there were significant failings by public services, including West Mercia Police, in the handling of child sexual exploitation in the borough dating back to the mid-90s.

Speaking on behalf of West Mercia Police, Assistant Chief Constable Richard Cooper, said: “I would like to say sorry. Sorry to the survivors and all those affected by child sexual exploitation in Telford. While there were no findings of corruption, our actions fell far short of the help and protection you should have had from us, it was unacceptable, we let you down. It is important we now take time to reflect critically and carefully on the content of the report and the recommendations that have been made.

“Whilst we are in a different place now there are no excuses for the past. What I can give you are assurances that we have made vast improvements to the way we tackle these crimes, but we cannot and will not stop there. We’re absolutely committed to continually looking to improve our approach.

“We now have teams dedicated to preventing and tackling child exploitation. We also have an Online Child Sexual Exploitation Team (OCSET) to ensure that we are targeting offenders both online and in person. The officers in these teams work incredibly hard, day in day out, to actively root out perpetrators and put them before the courts as well as preventing offending.

“The way we work with other agencies has evolved and we now work better together so that we can act quickly to safeguard children at risk of being targeted and prevent harm whenever we can.

"When the worst does happen and a child is harmed, or if someone reaches out about an offence that happened some time ago, we have specially trained officers who understand the complex and sensitive nature of these issues and can ensure the right and necessary support is there.

“Some years ago we have introduced exploitation and vulnerability trainers delivering training to those in jobs and roles that may be able to spot the signs of offences such as council workers, teachers, hotel staff and taxi drivers which has been invaluable.

“We want people who are, or think they are, being exploited or are concerned about child sexual exploitation to report this to us. We will listen and we will act on any information given to us.”

You can read more about the inquiry and the full report on the IITCSE website.

Government seeks views to improve lives of people with Down's syndrome Down Syndrome Act 2022 guidance: call for evidence. This call for evidence will run for a period of 16 weeks and is open to everyone.

People with Down’s syndrome, their families, professionals and charities are being invited to answer the government’s call for evidence to shape new guidance for authorities to follow.

The guidance will help to ensure those with Down’s syndrome receive the care and support they need to live longer, happier and healthier lives.

People with Down’s syndrome have seen their life expectancy increase from around 13 to almost 60 within a generation so tailored support is required to meet additional health, education, care and housing needs.

The Down Syndrome Act, , requires the Health and Social Care Secretary to issue guidance on how to meet the needs of people with Down’s syndrome.

Authorities including the NHS, health commissioners and Integrated Care Boards - who will also appoint a named lead to oversee implementation - will then be required to follow the guidance.

People with Down’s syndrome are at an increased risk of certain medical conditions - such as congenital heart disease, early onset dementia or hearing and visual impairment. Education and early years support may not always meet needs and can be difficult to access and there is not enough suitable supported housing.

The new guidance will help ensure improved access to the support that people with Down’s syndrome need, which can include speech and language therapy, additional educational, housing and care support.

Although legal duties and care frameworks already exist it can be difficult to access services. This guidance will identify what is needed and how it should be delivered.

The call for evidence will also investigate what support is available and what barriers remain with regards to accessing healthcare. In adult social care, questions will focus on the levels of support available to ensure personal care, community engagement and relationships can be maintained.

In housing everyone has the right to try and live as independently as they wish in their own home so questions will focus on what is needed to make this possible.

In education the call for evidence will link to the wider Special Education Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and Alternative Provision reforms.



DBS check eligibility guidance for the charity sector and overseas aid organisations

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) has issued new guidance around eligibility for DBS checks, for people in the charity sector and overseas aid organisations. There is separate guidance for those who work with children, and those who work with adults.

The guidance covers England, Wales, the Channel Islands, and the Isle of Man. Information on criminal record checks available in Scotland can be obtained from Disclosure Scotland and information on criminal record checks available in Northern Ireland can be obtained from Access NI.

The guidance includes information on:

  • different DBS checks and eligibility for various roles
  • scenario examples to provide a better understanding of DBS check eligibility
  • criminal record checks overseas, certificates of good character and International Child Protection Certificates (ICPC)
  • regulated activity and the legal duty to make a barring referral

The leaflets can be found below:


The Charity Commission has opened an inquiry into Devon and Cornwall Autistic Community Trust, also known as ‘Spectrum’.

The regulator is concerned that the trustees may have failed to fulfil their legal duties and responsibilities under charity law, following several highly critical inspections of the charity’s facilities by Care Quality Commission (CQC).

The CQC’s inspections of the charity’s adult care facilities found five to be inadequate and eight requiring improvement.

The trustees have failed to take sufficient action to address all of the concerns raised by the CQC. This has raised regulatory concerns about how the trustees are managing the charity. The Commission’s inquiry will investigate whether there has been misconduct and/or mismanagement in the administration and governance of the charity.

The inquiry will examine:

  • The trustees’ response and decision making in relation to the safeguarding concerns which have been raised by statutory and/or regulatory bodies.
  • Whether the trustees had complied and fulfilled their duties under charity law with particular regard to having sufficient oversight of safeguarding arrangements within the charity.

The Commission may extend the scope of the inquiry if additional issues emerge.

The charity commission added:

  • The Commission is not a safeguarding regulator and, therefore, any substantive safeguarding matters will be investigated by the appropriate regulator and/or police as appropriate.
  • The Charity Commission is the independent, non-ministerial government department that registers and regulates charities in England and Wales. Its purpose is to ensure charity can thrive and inspire trust so that people can improve lives and strengthen society.
  • The Commission has not made any conclusions and the opening of the inquiry is not a finding of wrongdoing.

Worthy of Note

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Cwm Taf Morgannwg Safeguarding Board Response regarding Logan Mwangi

In a statement on their website the Cwm Taf Morgannwg Safeguarding Board say:

“Members of the Cwm Taf Morgannwg Safeguarding Board wish to express their condolences to the friends and family of Logan who have been affected by his tragic death.

Those responsible for Logan’s death have been brought to justice and are beginning the sentences confirmed by the Court on 30th June 2022.

The Safeguarding Board is undertaking a Child Practice Review in relation to Logan, which is being carried out in accordance with the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 “Working Together to Safeguard People” Volume 2.

This Child Practice Review aims to examine agencies’ involvement with Logan and his family to identify what lessons can be learnt for the future.
The Child Practice Review Panel is being chaired by an independent person and two independent reviewers have been appointed to carry out the Review.

As part of the Child Practice Review process, a multi-agency learning event, attended by practitioners who had direct involvement with Logan and his family will be held so that agencies can share their understanding of what happened and identify key learning points.

The Panel has also identified opportunities to engage with the family of Logan, to support with this learning, so that the child is central to the whole process.

A report is due to be presented to the Regional Safeguarding Board in the Autumn 2022, before being submitted to the Welsh Government for final endorsement and publication.

Pre-recorded evidence for rape victims rolled out to more North-West courts

More victims of rape and sexual violence will be spared the stress of being cross-examined in court under a scheme rolled out to a further 10 Crown Courts. The measure, which has already been successfully introduced in 37 Crown Courts, allows victims and witnesses of crimes such as rape and modern slavery to have their cross-examination video-recorded and played later during trial. This is subject to a successful application to the court.

The recording takes place as close to the time of the offence as possible, while memories remain fresh, and helps victims avoid the stress of giving evidence in a courtroom setting, which many find traumatic.

The measure will be available immediately at 10 Crown Courts - 9 in the North-West (Bolton, Burnley, Preston, Carlisle, Lancaster, Warrington, Chester, Manchester Crown Square and Manchester Minshull Street) and Swindon Crown Court in the West of England.

This extension means it is now available for victims of rape at 47 Crown Courts, over half of all locations in England and Wales. The government is committed to rolling it out nationwide by September.

The move follows the successful implementation for vulnerable victims, such as children or those who have limited mental capacity, across the country – with more than 2,500 witnesses having already benefitted from the technology since August 2020.

Jersey Strategy on Child Sexual Abuse And Exploitation

The Safeguarding Partnership Board (SPB) is launching a strategy to identify and prevent child sexual abuse and exploitation, and to help its victims.

The impact of child sexual abuse, child sexual exploitation and criminal exploitation (CSAE) on children and young people is significant. It causes great distress, leading to poor health, educational and social outcomes. It can compromise the emotional health and wellbeing of young people, which then impacts on their success in adulthood.

The Safeguarding Partnership Board Multi-Agency Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Strategy calls for all agencies to work together with the young person and their family in a coherent and consistent way to tackle CSAE. It has been developed with all the relevant agencies working together to ensure the best outcomes for people affected.

The strategy aims to ensure that all agencies can respond to CSAE at the earliest opportunity, offer child-friendly justice, provide appropriate and timely recovery services, and evaluate practice and the effectiveness of interventions by measuring outcomes.

It aims to reduce the long-term impact of CSAE on children, young people and families living in Jersey. The fundamental vision is for all children and young people in Jersey to be free from abuse and exploitation.

Children in care are still being illegally placed in unregulated homes in England, including on narrowboats and in caravans, BBC News has learned

Children in care are still being illegally placed in unregulated homes in England, including on narrowboats and in caravans, Such placements were banned for under-16s, but there are concerns exemptions for holidays are being exploited.

The Department for Education says it is Ofsted's job to prosecute companies running unlawful children's homes.Local authorities are breaking the law by placing children under the age of 16 in unregulated homes.

It is also illegal for companies to run unregistered children's homes, although there are exemptions allowing firms to run placements that are not regulated, such as for holidays or leisure activities.

Ofsted says these are not meant to allow the child to be moved between temporary placements, but there is no law or guidance defining these activities. Tents have previously been used by other companies. A 12-year-old boy was recently placed in unregulated care for at least six weeks with a company that moves children between its narrowboats and caravans. Despite being under the care of Worcestershire County Council, he was placed in a caravan on a campsite, in Lancashire, more than 100 miles away from his siblings and his school. 

The boy had been moved between a number of children's homes before his most recent home was closed at short notice for staffing reasons. He was then moved into a caravan run by Bear Care Services. In contrast, his brother has been in a stable foster placement for years.

Children’s Social Care National Implementation Board

The board, which applies to England, Scotland and Wales, brings together strategic leaders and people with lived experience of the care system to advise on the reform programme for children’s social care.

The government announced the Children’s Social Care National Implementation Board as part of its initial response to the recommendations from:

  • the independent review of children’s social care
  • the independent Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel’s review into the murders of Arthur Labinjo-Hughes and Star Hobson
  • the Competition and Markets Authority’s report into the children’s social care market

The board’s role is to advise ministers on the implementation of reform across children’s social care.
The board is chaired by Brendan Clarke-Smith, Minister for Children and Families.
The board members will include those with:

  • experience of leading transformational change in the children’s social care sector
  • lived experience of the care system

The current members are:

  • Amanda Spielman - Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector at Ofsted
  • Sir Anthony Finkelstein CBE, FREng - President of City, University of London. Computer Scientist.
  • Isabelle Trowler - Chief Social Worker for Children and Families for England
  • Jill Colbert OBE - Chief Executive of Together for Children and Director for Children’s Services in Sunderland
  • Dame Rachel De Souza DBE - England’s Children’s Commissioner
  • Steve Crocker OBE - President of the Association for Directors of Children’s Services
  • Tom Riordan CBE - Chief Executive of Leeds City Council

Three board members with direct experience of the care system will be appointed ahead of the first full board meeting.

The board’s terms of reference and the first set of minutes will be published in due course.




Care Quality Commission (CQC)

All CQC-registered providers to ensure their staff receive training on interacting with people with a learning disability and autistic people

Source: Care and Quality Commission (CQC) published on this site Tuesday 5 July 2022.

From 1 July 2022, all health and social care providers registered with CQC must ensure that their staff receive training in how to interact appropriately with people who have a learning disability and autistic people, at a level appropriate to their role. This new legal requirement is introduced by the Health and Care Act 2022.

The government is also required to consult on and publish a Code of Practice, which would outline the content, delivery and ongoing monitoring and evaluation of the Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training, which it has developed. It is anticipated that the government will take at least 12 months to publish the Code of Practice.

CQC will provide statutory guidance until the Code of Practice is published. During assessments and inspections of providers, CQC regularly look to see if staff are working with people appropriately, and if not, they consider what training and support has been provided to staff to ensure their understanding. Following the introduction of this requirement, CQC will be looking to see whether staff have received such training and whether providers have assessed the competencies of their staff following training. CQC will not be looking at what the training itself involves.

The statutory guidance has been updated to reflect these changes and will continue to engage with the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC).



Staying Safe Online This Summer

This very helpful and informative article has been written by Andy Robinson Marketing and Communications Manager for SWGfL and published first in their newsletter. How to sign up for the newsletter is included below.

It was found in a recent Ofcom media use and attitudes report that ‘more than a third (36%) of children aged 8-17 said they had seen something ‘worrying or nasty’ online in the past 12 months.’ With such a common occurrence, it is useful for professionals, parents and carers to be aware of how they can support.

Social Media

Social media will be a popular choice for many, and while it is a phenomenal tool to stay in touch with friends and family members, there can be certain risks associated with young people experiencing harm online. It is good for parents and carers to be aware of what platforms are being used, as well as what the latest trends are. Take a look at what features may be available to help set some additional security around who they can connect with and the types of content they see. Why not also take a look at our recent social media hub to get the latest guidance as well as access to our social media checklists.

Safer Internet Searching

In many schools, it is a requirement to have appropriate filtering and monitoring systems in place, but what about at home? Depending on the type of internet connection you may have, safer internet searching is an essential practice for when children and young people are spending more time at home. Discover Swiggle, the child-friendly search engine that is ad-free and can be used as your default home page. Swiggle consistently filters out harmful content whilst prioritising educational resources. You can also see guidance from the UK Safer Internet Centre around using devices safely.

Supporting Digital Wellbeing

More time online can lead to a poor online/ offline balance, which can sometimes negatively affect a young person’s digital wellbeing. Going online will be common for many, but try and encourage a young person in your care to set some time for offline activities as well. Many social media platforms have included wellbeing features in recent times to set options around screen time and the way content is presented. Take time to see what is available and raise awareness around what wil lset some boundaries. You can find out more information in our digital wellbeing hub, which we launched earlier this year.

Online Gaming

With more time at home comes more time to game. The Ofcom media use and attitudes report highlighted that ‘six in ten children aged 3-17 played games online in 2021, increasing to three-quarters of 12-17s’ As well as this, ‘more than a third of 8-17s who gamed online played with people they didn’t know (36%)’ Gaming provides a lot of connective freedom and is clearly a massively enjoyable experience for many but it is important for young people to understand where risks may occur and how they can safely navigate these online spaces. Raise awareness around how to block, mute and report someone who is being inappropriate as well as highlighting that it is ok to step away from the game if they feel uncomfortable. Get more guidance and resources in our gaming hub.

Reporting Harmful Content

At the heart of staying safe online is understanding where to go to if you need support. Online harm can appear at any given time, which can often cause considerable upset and worry for many children and young people. Get a grasp on what reporting features are available for some of the most popular online platforms and encourage young people to discuss any concerns with a trusted adult no matter what they may be. If someone needs further support and is 13+, you can contact Report Harmful Content to get advice around reporting legal but harmful material online.

New measures will go further in tackling child sexual abuse online than ever before

Greater powers to tackle child sexual abuse online will be introduced through an amendment to the Online Safety Bill, the Home Secretary announced on Wednesday 6 July 2022.

The amendment will give Ofcom extra tools to ensure technology companies take action to prevent, identify and remove harmful child sexual abuse and exploitation (CSAE) content.

Ofcom, the UK’s regulatory authority for telecommunications, will be able to demand that technology companies such as social media platforms roll out or develop new technologies to better detect and tackle harmful content on their platforms. If they fail to do so, Ofcom will be able to impose fines of up to £18 million or 10% of the company’s global annual turnover, depending on which is higher.

The government-funded Safety Tech Challenge Fund is demonstrating that is it is possible to detect child sexual abuse material in end-to-end encrypted environments, while respecting user privacy.

Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) data fuels report aimed at ‘turning tide of online child sexual abuse’

A new report by an independent think tank looks at what can be done by police and government to help “turn the tide of online child sexual abuse”.

The research by The Police Foundation draws extensively on Internet Watch Foundation (IWF) data to highlight the “industrial scale” of child sexual abuse material on the internet. 

The IWF encourages parents and carers to T.A.L.K to their children about the risks online and make them better prepared, helping to reduce the number of incidences of online abuse.

  • Talk to your child about online sexual abuse. Start the conversation – and listen to their concerns.
  • Agree ground rules about the way you use technology as a family.
  • Learn about the platforms and apps your child loves. Take an interest in their online life.
  • Know how to use tools, apps and settings that can help to keep your child safe online.

More information and resources available at

Reforms to protect victims of intimate image abuse, criminalising “downblousing” and sharing pornographic deepfakes without consent

The Law Commission of England and Wales has proposed new recommendations to strengthen the law to protect victims of intimate image abuse.

The law reforms, published following a detailed review, would make it easier to prosecute those who take or share sexual, nude or other intimate images of people without their consent.

The Government asked the Commission to undertake a thorough review of the laws around intimate image abuse, following calls for them to go further to capture a wider range of harmful behaviours.

The proposed reforms would put in place a clearer legal framework, which would broaden the scope of intimate image offences, so that all instances of intentionally taking or sharing intimate images without consent are criminalised, regardless of motivation.

The Commission’s recommendations would also update the law to cover more modern forms of abuse that are currently not offences.

Under current law, acts such as “upskirting” or voyeurism are criminalised, but this would be extended further to cover the abusive act of “downblousing”, as well as the sharing of altered intimate images of people without their consent, including pornographic deepfakes and “nudified” images.

As well as extending and simplifying the law, under the reforms, all victims of abuse would receive lifetime anonymity. Widening these important protections would help empower victims to report and support prosecutions.

The recommended reforms would bring in a “base” offence for intimate image abuse, supplemented by three additional offences for more serious conduct and a further offence for installing equipment:

  • A new base offence: It would be an offence for someone to intentionally take or share an intimate image of a person if they do not consent and the perpetrator does not reasonably believe that they consent.
  • This base offence would apply regardless of the perpetrator’s motivation. Current intimate image offences are restricted to one or two narrow motivations: to cause humiliation, alarm or distress to the victim or to obtain sexual gratification. This would be widened to include all motivations, such as sharing intimate images for financial gain, social status or as a joke, or where there is no motivation at all. This offence could lead to a maximum sentence of six months’ imprisonment.
  • Three additional offences for more serious conduct: where the perpetrator has taken or shared an intimate image without consent with the motivation either to obtain sexual gratification, or to cause humiliation, alarm or distress, or where the perpetrator has threatened to share an intimate image. These offences could lead to a sentence of two to three years’ imprisonment.
  • An offence for installing equipment: it would be an offence to install equipment such as a hidden camera, in order to take an intimate image of a person without their consent.

Under the recommendations, all victims of the new offences would be automatically eligible for lifetime anonymity. Currently, only victims of voyeurism and upskirting are automatically eligible for anonymity.

All victims would also be eligible for special measures to support them giving evidence in a trial – for example, by giving evidence behind a screen, by video link or through pre-recorded evidence.

All the offences in the new framework would cover the same range of images; images that are nude, partially nude, of a sexual act or of toileting. Currently, for some intimate images it is an offence to take them but not to share them, and vice versa.

The Reason to Remain Vigilant in All Aspects of Safeguarding


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Ex-sports coach from Hove sentenced for historic sex offences against boys

An ice hockey coach and sports teacher from Hove has been sentenced for a third time for yet another series of non-recent sexual offences against young boys, this time stretching back to a period nearly 50 years ago.

Michael James Green, 80, previously of Neville Avenue in Hove, denied another 12 counts of buggery and indecent assaults, when he appeared at Chichester Crown Court, but was convicted on Thursday 7 July after a nine-day trial.

On the following day, Friday 8 July, he was sentenced to 17-and-half years imprisonment.

The new offences against four more boys took place between 1973 and 1993 and came to light when the victims saw publicity about his previous offending and contacted the police.

At the time of the abuse, all of the boys were aged between 13 and 16 years of age.

Green met two of the boys when he worked as an insurance salesman in Brighton. One of the boys, who thought of Green as a family friend, but was abused in his own home.

Green gained access to the second boy through coaching an ice hockey team in Brighton, and took him to a popular local beauty spot, Devil’s Dyke, where he abused him. He also abused him at Green’s home address.

He forced the boys to perform sex acts and raped one of them.

Green then went on to be a sports coach at a boarding school in West Sussex where he abused the other two two boys, grooming and assaulting them. Both were full-time boarders.

The court heard that Green is already in prison, having been sentenced to nine years in September 2018 having been convicted of 17 indecent assaults between 1980 and 1994 against a total of seven boys then aged between 12 and 16, in addition to a nine-year sentence imposed in 2014.

He had met three of the boys while he was head coach of the juniors at the Brighton Ice Hockey Club, and one while he was involved in coaching junior cycle speedway in Havant.

A further three boys were separately assaulted while pupils at the same boarding school in West Sussex, between 1988 and 1994, where Green was a sports coach at the time. Green was convicted of four offences against one of them, three of which were committed during school trips to the cinema in Brighton and one at the school, and two offences against each of the other two boys, one of which was committed at Green's then address, the other three being committed at the school.

The court also heard that Green had been previously been sentenced to nine years imprisonment in February 2014 for four counts of sexual offences against four young boys.
Those 2014 convictions had resulted from an investigation by detectives whereby a young boy had been sexually assaulted by Green in the early 1980's when he was living in Nevill Avenue.

Further victims came forward during that investigation, and Green was convicted of one offence of buggery against a boy, and of indecent assault against three other victims. A further charge of buggery against the first boy was ordered to lie on the court file.

All the boys in the 2014 case were aged between 13 and 15 at the time of those offences which took place between 1981 and 1982. Green had met them separately in Havant and South London whilst he was engaged in the running of junior cycle speedway clubs. He had met his first victim at the now defunct Havant Cycle Speedway Club.

Broadcaster Nicky Campbell has revealed for the first time that he was the victim of abuse at a private school in Edinburgh during the 1970s.

The 61-year-old told his BBC Sounds podcast Different he witnessed and experienced sexual and violent physical abuse at the Edinburgh Academy.
He told BBC Radio 5 Live the abuse had a "profound effect on my life" and had been "obsessing me".

The Academy "wholeheartedly" apologised and said it had helped police.

It was after his wife heard another BBC podcast, In Dark Corners, which explores abuse at Britain's private schools, that Campbell decided to contact the producer and reveal what he knew about the Edinburgh Academy.

Introducing his 5 Live show Campbell told listeners he was about to discuss a difficult subject, adding: "I know I am amongst friends but I may have a wobble but I know you'll be with me."

Explaining his experiences, he said: "I was badly beaten up at school by a teacher who was a leading light in the scripture union - my mother took it as far as she could and got a grovelling apology from him, but was essentially stonewalled and it was hushed up by the school.

"Those were different times and that has stayed with me all my life.

"And there was a teacher Hamish Dawson who is now dead who had regularly wandering hands - many of us were on the receiving end - and me and my friends still talk about it - with utter contempt. We were 12.

"But there was something else that I will never forget.
"Being in a changing room at 10 years old - after rugby - seeing a teacher abuse my friend. I cannot describe it here and I can never un-see it.

"This man was known to us all as a predator and a sadist but we never told. Anyone. My school friends and I talk about it now with each other with again - contempt, disbelief and incomprehension that sort of thing happened in plain sight and nothing was done.

"And why didn't we as little boys tell anyone in power what was happening? I don't know.

"I made up my mind to contact the journalist Alex Renton to tell him about this man who we all presumed had disappeared into the ether and probably died.

"When I spoke to Alex, I said I have to tell you about this man and something that haunts me - I didn't suffer at his hands - I wasn't abused by him but I know how much it affected those who he did target.

"All their lives - there were many. What I witnessed was horrific and I realised how much it's just a part of my psychological furniture - always there.

"I told Alex his name and before I'd got to the surname he finished it off for me. He was called 'Edgar' in the programme. It was an extraordinary moment. I thought of all my friends. All those little boys.

"But at last - someone told the grownups.
"And then three words that I will never forget - he is alive.

"I worked it out, given other witness statements on the record, survivors accounts - and his long career in teaching always with glowing references - he could well be one of the most prolific paedophiles in British criminal history.

"He lives abroad - with his wife in comfortable retirement and efforts to extradite him have failed. He has been arrested but can't be charged until he is on British soil and the chances of that are receding."

A spokeswoman for the Edinburgh Academy said it "deeply regrets what has happened in the past and apologises wholeheartedly to those concerned".
"We have worked closely with the relevant authorities including Police Scotland with their inquiries and would like to provide reassurance that things have dramatically changed since the 1970s.

"The Academy has robust measures in place to safeguard children at the school with child protection training now core to the ethos of the Academy."

The Scottish Child Abuse Inquiry has heard evidence about abuse at the Edinburgh Academy, as well as other Scottish private schools, including Gordonstoun, attended by the late Duke of Edinburgh, and the Prince of Wales. That school has apologised to anyone who suffered abuse in its care.

The inquiry, led by Judge Lady Smith, was launched by the Scottish government in 2015. It will report the outcome of its investigations to Scottish ministers "and make recommendations" about policies and the law.

Find the In Dark Corners podcast series here

And Finally

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Every school will have a life-saving defibrillator by 22/23

State-funded schools across England will receive defibrillators under new government plans to make sure there is a device in every school, boosting their numbers in communities across the country.

Defibrillators have the potential to save the lives of pupils, staff and visitors in schools, with latest research showing that accessing these devices within 3-5 minutes of a cardiac arrest increases the chance of survival by over 40%.

The announcement comes after the government first committed last year to look at how to achieve a defibrillator on every school site, following a meeting with the Oliver King Foundation, supported by ex-footballer Jamie Carragher, which has worked tirelessly to raise awareness of this issue.

Since meeting with the foundation’s founder Mark King, who tragically lost his son Oliver at the age of 12 to a cardiac arrest, the government has worked with charities and experts, including the British Heart Foundation, to identify the scale of need across English schools.

A survey will soon go out to all state-funded schools to finalise the number of devices that will need to be procured, which is estimated to be over 20,000. The government has committed to funding all necessary devices so that every school has at least one on-site, or more for schools with larger sites.

The rollout will build on existing requirements for schools to teach first aid as part of the curriculum, with secondary school pupils being taught life-saving methods such as CPR and the purpose of defibrillators. This rollout will help protect schools and their local communities against cardiac arrest, delivering wider access to these devices.