Not enough support for Rotherham abuse victims, warns report author

Prof Alexis Jay with her report into child sexual exploitation in Rotherham.

Prof Alexis Jay with her report into child sexual exploitation in Rotherham.

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Victims of child sexual exploitation are not getting enough support for counselling, the woman whose inquiry exposed the Rotherham scandal has said.

Professor Alexis Jay said many of the children abused as teenagers in the town between 1997 and 2013 have gone to suffer mental health problems or self-harm.

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She says support services to help victims are not widely available enough. Prof Jay’s inquiry into child sexual exploitation in Rotherham found at least 1,400 children had been abused over a 16-year-period.

She said: “Many are filled with guilt and self-loathing and some self-harm or even attempt suicide. Others may be addicted to drink or drugs, as a result of how they were groomed into exploitation and abuse.

“There are simply not enough resources across the country to give these young victims the type of support and therapeutic help which many if them will need. A further issue is some will need this kind of support for long periods, either continuously or from time to time. This is not just a problem in Rotherham but across the country.”

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