April 18, 2024

IICSA says it’s immoral not to report concerns about sexual abuse

Or rather it says ‘to a significant extent’ it’s never right or excusable not to report abuse, cover it up, or help someone avoid the scrutiny of authorities.

But this ‘to a significant extent’ point towards the fact that sometimes there may be circumstances in which it is understandable. What, for example, if someone thinks that reporting it is going to result in retribution, the aggressor or someone working on their behalf might try to have them killed, beaten up, terrorised, sacked, ostracised, raped or what have you.

IICSAs focus on individual responsibility ignores  the very immediate concerns that individuals have for their own well-being and how the social networks, cultures and organisations on which they depend for their survival can act to threaten those things in light of a disclosure being made.

IICSA ought to pay much closer attention to these dynamics and look at how the state can provide the structures, processes and protections necessary to keep those who disclose, safe.

 

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