LETTER : Why serial child abusers still slip through the net

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Indy Lifestyle Online
Sir: I write in strong support of the Independent/NSPCC Victims of Abuse Appeal, and of the excellent leading article (11 December) calling for more attention to the scandalous neglect of vulnerable children in the "care" of publicly accountable bodies.

Those in authority have not only failed to respond to the pleas of the victims, but they still fail to take proper action to deal with abusers. Children may not be taken into care when abusive fathers leave home, but why do we do nothing to prevent the risk of such fathers becoming serial paedophile offenders, the vast majority of whom never appear before the courts?

What is needed is more excellent treatment centres such as the Faithfull Foundation's Wolvercote Clinic, with costs less than prison, but highly successful outcomes in terms of low re-offending rates. Rather than rely on convicted paedophile registers, which exclude 95 per cent of known abusers, the Government should initiate strong multi-agency action at every local level, to treat offenders in both day centres and residential units.

PETER THURNHAM MP

(Bolton North East, Lib Dem)

House of Commons

London SW1

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