Home Secretary backs work of The Lucy Faithfull foundation to change the behaviour of people looking at sexual images of children online.

3 September 2018

In a flagship speech on how he intends to tackle the online sexual abuse of children, Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, began by setting out the scale of the problem, observing that there had been a 700% increase in the number of child abuse images being referred to the National Crime Agency in the last five years.

He continued by explaining how he intends to address the scale of the problem saying “I will continue to make sure that the police have all the powers and tools they need to fight child sexual abuse and to bring offenders to justice.

He also demanded that internet technology companies step up their efforts to protect children when they are online.

Mr Javid then announced major government support for the work of child protection charities, referencing specifically The Lucy Faithfull Foundation which works with offenders and potential offenders:

“In parallel, we will provide a further £2.6 million to collaborate with child protection organisations to improve our understanding of offender behaviour and prevent future offending.

“This includes support to the Lucy Faithfull Foundation which aims to change the behaviour of offenders and potential offenders by highlighting the harm and suffering that takes place behind every image.”

The work of The Lucy Faithfull Foundation to help offenders stop looking at online sexual images of children

The Lucy Faithfull Foundation runs Stop it Now! – a child sexual abuse prevention campaign. Stop it Now! runs a confidential helpline for people with concerns about child sexual abuse, including those with concerns about their own online sexual behaviour. Since 2002 10,407 people have called the Stop it Now! Helpline seeking help to stop looking at sexual images of children. In October 2015 Stop it Now! set up its Get Help website that hosts a range of information and online self-help resources for people seeking help to stop looking at sexual images of children. The Get Help website has received visits from over 88,000 people since its launch.

Welcoming the announcement by the Home Secretary for funding of its work to protect children by helping offenders to change their behaviour, Lucy Faithfull Foundation Chief Executive, Elaine McConnell said:

“For the last three years we’ve been working to deter illegal online behaviour by highlighting to offenders and potential offenders that viewing or sharing sexual images of children is a crime, that it’s incredibly harmful to the children in the images and that the consequences of the behaviour are serious.

“Not all offenders want to stop – but we know many do, and we know that with our help they can change their behaviour – the challenge for us is reaching them. We would welcome more collaborative working with tech companies to spread deterrence messages and signpost to our services.

“With funding from the Home Office announced today, we will be able to answer more calls through our confidential Stop it Now! Helpline to reduce offending, reduce demand for images, and protect more children.”

The full text of the Home Secretary’s speech is available here:

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