Speech Highlights: Sajid Javid's Pledge to Keep our Children Safe
Here are some of the highlights from Sajid Javid’s speech on September 3rd 2018.
In a speech today, Home Secretary Sajid Javid addressed online child sexual exploitation, with his mission as home secretary being “to [keep] our children safe” from the invisible online predators.
After visiting the National Crime Agency’s Child Exploitation Online Protection Command David was alerted to some shocking statistics.
The NCA estimates (conservatively) that around 80,000 people in the UK that present some kind of sexual threat to children online.
More child sexual abuse images are being uploaded and shared online than ever before. In fact, there has been a 700% increase in the number of referrals to the National Crime Agency for this type of content since 2013.
“The growth of the internet has given potential offenders who previously may have had no access to children the opportunity to meet and groom and abuse victims online on gaming sites and on social media and to get access to more abuse material than ever before.”
“The NSPCC’s own research shows that some children are being groomed online in less than 45 minutes.”
The type of online abuse that really turned Javid’s stomach was live-streamed abuse.
“Poor and desperate families in countries like the Philippines are being targeted by organised criminal gangs to allow their children to be abused on webcams in exchange for money.”
“Sickeningly, people from around the world – including from right here in the UK – are then ordering the live-streaming of this abuse, sometimes for as little as £12.”
“Perhaps the people streaming this sort of abuse think that what they’re doing isn’t as bad because they aren’t the ones physically abusing the child. But let me say this. That is wrong. In my view, there is no difference between doing this sort of thing to a child in a bedroom in Manchester or having someone else do it for you to a child in Manila. “
Javid also highlighted the alarming fact that child abusers are also increasingly working together, using sophisticated means and validating each-others behavior.
“These people are as sophisticated as those terrorists hiding their tracks.”
With approximately 400 offenders arrested every month and 500 children safeguarded, Javid has highlighted his determination to end online child abuse.
“That’s why we have we have increased the amount of funding available for charities supporting the victims and survivors of child sexual abuse.”
- £13 million through the Trusted Relationships Fund, for projects to build children’s resilience to these types of crimes.
- £21 million over the next 18 months to bolster the response of our law enforcement agencies to these types of crimes.
- £20 million in overseas development aid over the next two years to tackle this threat.
- £2.6 million to collaborate with child protection organisation's to improve our understanding of offender behaviour and prevent future offending.
- £250,000 available to support new ideas on how to detect and disrupt the live-streaming of abuse.
In addition, the government have already announced their intention to make relationships education mandatory in primary schools, which will include teaching children about staying safe online.
“We don’t send our kids out to play in the park or teach them to cross the road alone without giving them advice. But when it comes to their time spent on the internet or glued to their smartphones, it’s often a different story.”
And finally, Javid spoke of the importance of internet giants in tackling this threat to children around the world.
“The reality is that the threat has evolved quicker than industry’s response and industry has not kept up. And there are some companies that refuse to take it seriously.”
To read the full transcript of his speech, click here.