High profile child sexual exploitation cases (CSE) like those in Rotherham and Rochdale have led many people to assume that all CSE victims are white British girls. But it's not the case. Worryingly, this stereotype highlighted in our report 'It's not on the radar', means that some front-line workers may be missing children affected by CSE.
Since the watershed moment when we discovered the extent of the utterly repulsive crimes committed by Jimmy Savile the number of reported sex offences against children has almost doubled. Last year our ChildLine service provided 3,150 counselling sessions- up 10% on the previous twelve months - for children, as young as nine, who had been targets of or were worried about being groomed online.
We need to make sure that victims are supported to become survivors and that the process of disclosure does not become another horror for them to endure. These are not big asks, they don't cost very much - indeed the costs in not implementing them are much greater. So why have you not acted on them?
From murders to planting bombs in mosques should be a concern for everyone in Britain. We should neither tolerate abuse against young girls nor any kind of bigotry against a particular community in Britain. Anti-Muslim prejudice is a matter for everyone who cares about this country and our fair society.
It is a misrepresentation to imply that current police practice involves police officers unconditionally believing those who report a sexual assault. After years of extremely bad treatment of rape victims, what we're supposed to have now is police procedure where the complainant is simply treated respectfully, where police engagement with them takes their account seriously, and where the investigation is full and not subject to rape myths - basically prejudices about who "real victims" and "real perpetrators" are and how they behave.
Each and every one of us can help to protect children with learning disabilities, but as a society we must be prepared to fundamentally change our attitudes and approach to how this group of young people are treated and supported. Only then can we take the necessary steps to protect these children and make sure that no one uses their disability to sexually exploit them.
Child abuse comes in many forms - from neglect to physical, online to sexual - and at the heart of tackling it lies a need to provide a loving and supportive environment for all children. Listening to them properly when they need to be heard and then helping to equip them with an understanding of abuse and develop resilience against it. Preventing abuse before it can take hold is how, together, we will end cruelty to children.
Recent weeks have given us a sobering reminder of the dreadful impact of child sexual exploitation. The further revelations regarding Rotherham coupled with the announcements of new investigations in Manchester, Halifax and Essex, reinforce the belief that we are only beginning to scratch the surface of this emerging national blight.
The charity Railway Children, which works with children who run away and end up on the streets, this week launches the report Reaching Safe Places. Funded by the charity's corporate partner Aviva, the report also involved a group of young researchers with personal experience of running away and homelessness.
I cannot imagine there are sensible adults who want to live in a culture in which child sexual exploitation is a new social norm in some or any communities. Yet there are sensible adults who are not doing all they can to make sure we develop a healthy and positive culture about young people, sex and sexuality.
Every day, we work with vulnerable children, many of whom have experienced or are at risk of child sexual exploitation. This horrific abuse has affected a number of children supported by our services, whether related to risks to those in residential or foster care, or to young parents receiving our help. Awareness must be raised and professionals, children, and their carers must be educated about the risks around exploitation, as well as ways to guard against it.