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IICSA published its final Report in October 2022. This website was last updated in January 2023.

IICSA Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

The Report of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

Final report

I.2: “I wanted accountability and justice”

4. An acknowledgement that child sexual abuse had occurred was important to many victims and survivors. One member of the Victims and Survivors Forum said that “first and foremost” they wanted “an acknowledgement that it did happen and that it shouldn’t have been allowed to happen”.[1] Some victims and survivors specifically wanted access to their childhood records as a form of acknowledgement. Without this, they felt “a lack of closure a feeling of perpetual childhood”.[2]

5. Many victims and survivors said that they wanted to receive an apology for the sexual abuse they experienced. Jason said: “I just want someone to say sorry”.[3] RS-A299 described the value of an apology: “it’s the acknowledgement of, ‘Yes, there was wrongdoing … and we do take even an emblem of responsibility’”.[4]

6. Some victims and survivors described a strong desire for formal accountability, including through the criminal justice system. One Truth Project participant said simply: “I want justice … I want justice. I want justice”.[5] Three percent of Truth Project participants who disclosed child sexual abuse at the time said that their disclosure eventually resulted in the perpetrator being convicted.

7. Victims and survivors reported mixed feelings about financial compensation. For some, it was the only way to recognise the “spectacular financial loss(es)” associated with child sexual abuse.[6] For others, it felt like “blood money”.[7] Indira said: “I just want an apology, I don’t want compensation”.[8] Seven percent of Truth Project participants who had previously disclosed child sexual abuse said that they had sought financial compensation.

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