February 4, 2013
WINNIPEG, MB: Child sexual abuse is a serious problem within our society that can have devastating effects on communities and occurs more frequently than people may realize. According to Statistics Canada, 59% of all victims of sexual abuse reported to police in 2009 were children under the age of 18 years. Of those, 40% were children 11 years of age or under. The Canadian Centre for Child Protection, through its programs and services, works hard to reduce child victimization including bringing public awareness about the issue of child sexual exploitation and providing Canadians with the tools and resources to help keep children safer.
The Canadian Centre also recognizes the need for tougher penalties for those convicted of child sexual offences and therefore supports today’s stakeholder discussions about the next phase of the Government of Canada’s plan for safe streets and communities with regard to tougher sentencing of child sex offenders and addressing the risks posed by known child sex offenders.
“Child sexual abuse has devastating effects not only for the victim, but for families, schools and communities,” says Lianna McDonald, Executive Director, Canadian Centre for Child Protection. “We need to send a message, loud and clear, that we will not support this type of violence, and that we will do everything possible to keep our children safe from sexual exploitation. The protection of children is all of our responsibility, and we must work together to build safer communities for our children.”
The Canadian Centre operates Cybertip.ca, Canada’s tipline for reporting the online sexual exploitation of children. The tipline has received close to 80,000 reports from Canadians regarding their concerns about children being sexually exploited on the Internet. Reports have resulted in at least 120 arrests executed by law enforcement agencies and numerous children received from abusive environments.