The Impact of Covid-19 On Online Child Sexual Exploitation and the Implications for Victims and Survivors
This presentation describes the evolving role of technology in organised and extreme abuse and its implications for the safety and wellbeing of victims and survivors. The paper provides a brief history of technology in child sexual exploitation over the last fifty years and the ways in which camera, video and computing developments have been misused by perpetrators of child sexual abuse. The contemporary landscape of responses to technology-facilitated abuse will also be described, including areas of strength as well as ongoing gaps in policy and practice. The paper presents original findings from three research studies: 1) a comparative content analysis of pre-internet and contemporary child sexual abuse material, 2) a global survey of law enforcement and hotline workers specializing in online child abuse and 3) a survey of 75 adult survivors of child sexual abuse material. In closing, the paper closes with reflections from survivors on the adequacy of mental health responses to technology-facilitated abuse and makes recommendations for improved care.
Potential to Distress: Yes
Upon completion of this webinar participants will be able to:
- Recognize the impacts of technology-facilitated abuse on survivors of child sexual exploitation
- Analyze competing claims about the role of technology in organised and extreme abuse
- Able to appraise the shifting role of technology in child sexual exploitation for different age cohorts of survivors
Presenter: Michael Salter, PhD
Presenter Biography: A/Prof Michael Salter is a Scientia Fellow and criminologist at the University of New South Wales. His research is focused on gendered violence and sexual exploitation, including primary prevention, complex trauma and technologically-facilitated abuse. He is the author of two books, including the first study of child sexual exploitation in Australia, Organised Sexual Abuse (Routledge, 2013), and an examination of abuse and harassment on social media, Crime, Justice and Social Media (Routledge, 2017), as well as over forty papers on violence, abuse and trauma. A/Prof Salter sits on the Board of Directors of the International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation, who awarded him the 2018 Morton Prince Award for Scientific Achievement. He is a member of the editorial board of the Child Abuse Review and the Journal of Trauma and Dissociation, an expert advisor to the Office of the eSafety Commissioner and the Canadian Centre for Child Protection, and the patron of the Child Abuse Prevention Service.
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