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Truth Project experiences shared: victims and survivors speak out

Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

The report contains anonymised summaries of some of the experiences that have been shared by victims and survivors at the Truth Project. The summaries have been anonymised and pseudonyms have been used for all victims and survivors and perpetrators. We have also removed details which could identify any victim or survivor, including locations, ages, years and institutions involved. Experiences reflect what each victim and survivor wanted to share and may be a part or all of their experience.

These are not all of the experiences that have been shared, but a selection from the private sessions of the Truth Project. We will continue to publish shared experiences and aim to publish as many summaries as we can. We have invited just under 500 victims and survivors to a private session and are working with others who will be offered a session in 2017. To date we have heard, or are shortly to hear, the experiences of approximately 250 victims and survivors in private sessions. Requests to share an experience in writing are not included in this first publication.

We have the greatest respect for those who have chosen to share their experiences with us. Each participant represented in this document gave their consent to their summary being shared publicly. Many victims and survivors have told us that they want society to talk about these issues, to talk about abuse, to remove it from the shadows and expose the secrecy, intimidation and abuse of power that shrouds child abuse experiences.

We are aware that we are publishing detailed personal accounts depicting child sexual abuse. As an Inquiry, we have carefully considered the tensions around the level of detail that we include in these summaries and the use of language to describe acts of abuse. We have also consulted with our Victims and Survivors’ Consultative Panel about how best to put this information into the public domain. We have considered how some will read these accounts with good intentions, others will not. Nevertheless, one of the core aims of the Truth Project is to enable victims and survivors to have the opportunity to share their experience. Whilst there is precedence for publishing detailed accounts in this way, we wanted to ensure we did so in both a sensitive and impactful way, and have taken the time to consider these tensions.Content warning

This report contains material that may be upsetting. Whilst the experiences in this report have been anonymised, they are true accounts from victims and survivors who have shared their experiences with us. They are not the full accounts shared with us, but we have not changed any aspect of the experiences except to edit identifying details.