Improving responses to the sexual abuse of Black, Asian and minority ethnic children
In this new small scale study we commissioned the Race Equality Foundation (REF) to explore the perspectives of professionals working with children from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds who have experienced child sexual abuse. The professionals were asked to discuss: the needs of the children, the extent to which these are being met and how professionals and services’ responses could be improved. The study was conducted by Dr Nasreen Ali, a Reader in Public Health Equality at the Institute of Health Research, University of Bedfordshire, Jabeer Butt, CEO, at REF and Melanie Phillips, a qualified social worker with extensive experience in children’s social care.
The research consisted of interviews with 16 professionals working in the voluntary sector and across local authorities. All interviewees had expertise in working with children from Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds, principally: South Asian, Black Caribbean and Haredi Orthodox Jewish backgrounds.
In addressing the challenges outlined in this study, the authors recommend: increasing diversity in the workforce, addressing racism and unconscious bias, developing cultural competency, establishing services within communities and building trust, raising awareness of CSA within communities, and challenging ideas that prevent disclosure and encourage victim blaming.
We’d like to hear from you. If you have any personal or professional reflections on this report, please do send us a message.
A note on language: The CSA Centre notes that the use of generic terminology when talking about ethnicity is contested, as it risks homogenising people’s experiences and masking inequalities between groups. Where appropriate, the new report uses the term ‘Black, Asian and minority ethnic’ to encompass all those communities – people from any ethnic background other than White British – whose experience we wanted to explore, but the research has aimed to be as specific as possible in identifying the experiences of different groups, and to avoid generalising.
Perspectives of service users with learning difficulties or experience of care
This study was undertaken by three researchers from Coventry University: Anita Franklin, Louise Bradley and Geraldine Brady. They interviewed 10 young people with learning difficulties and a further 10 young people with experience of being in care; all had accessed CSA support services, and were recruited by the providers of those services for this research.