Child abuse

Protecting children from harm, keeping them safe and investigating child abuse crimes in all forms is a priority for Cambridgeshire Constabulary.

In order for us to deal with child abuse more effectively we take a child–centred approach where the welfare and well–being of the child is core to the way it is handled.

We have a dedicated team called the Child Abuse Investigation and Safeguarding Unit (CAISU) which is responsible for the investigation of all familial sexual, physical and emotional abuse of children.

It also investigates offences committed against children by people who are in a position of trust over them, such as teachers, nursery staff and other people involved in working with children where they have a degree of responsibility to safeguard and protect. In addition to this, the unit also undertakes historical and institutional enquiries relating to abuse which can reach back decades and involve very complex investigations.

We also work closely with our partner agencies in social care, education and health to manage the safety of children and investigate criminal offences.

Child abuse comes in various forms and can affect anyone. The consequences can be life–changing for the victim and those around them.

Abuse can be just one or a number of things happening to a child or teenager and so can be quite difficult to identify. There are four main types; emotional abuse, neglect, physical abuse and sexual abuse. To find out more about each of these click on the tabs to the left of this page.

Between April and September 2014 there were more than 360 child abuse cases reported to Cambridgeshire Constabulary, however it is still believed to be an under–reported crime. This is often because the abuse may be committed by parents, step–parents, relatives or people who are in a close relationship with the victim. Often the abuse can go on for years because the child is too afraid or embarrassed to tell someone.

Whether you are a victim, a friend or an adult, it is everyone’s responsibility to stop the abuse and speak out by telling someone; a friend, parent, teacher, a trusted adult or the police. Even if you’re not sure if it is abuse, speak out.

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