- 4 updates
Cases of online grooming is on the rise, the British Association of Social Workers (BASW) said today, after a new survey revealed that social workers felt concerned about dealing with online sexual abuse.
BASW professional officer Nushra Mansuri said:
Children's charity NSPCC has said it has developed an online training guide for child protection professionals - backed by the British Association of Social Workers BASW - to educate social about the risks the internet posed to children.
A new survey of social workers revealed that half of them felt concerned about dealing with online sexual abuse or behaviour.
NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless said: "Keeping children safe from sexual abuse increasingly means protecting them from offenders who use technology to target their victims, such as grooming in chatrooms or online social networks.
"It's worrying that the majority of social workers surveyed by BASW are struggling to understand how online child abuse happens.
"We know they are doing a tough job under pressure and shouldn't need to be technology experts but they do need to have a grasp of the basics".
Many social workers lack confidence and know-how when it comes to dealing with online grooming and sexual abuse of children, a survey has suggested.
The survey found:
- 50% said they do not know how to recognise the signs of online sexual abuse of children.
- 36% felt they did not know the right questions to ask to identify and assess online sexual abuse.
- Almost half (49%) said a quarter of their sexual abuse cases now involve some form of online abuse.
- 30% said they did not feel confident dealing with child protection sexual abuse cases using the internet.
- A third (34%) of social workers surveyed said they do not feel confident about understanding the language used by young people online.
- 47% said they were not knowledgeable about how young people communicate via social networking sites.
Social workers struggle to spot the warning signs that a child is being targeted for online sex abuse and need more support to help combat the problem, new research has revealed.
A survey of social workers revealed that half of them felt concerned about dealing with online sexual abuse or behaviour, while more than two thirds of social workers felt they needed more support with child protection cases involving online abuse.
The survey, carried out by the British Association of Social Workers (BASW) and children's charity the NSPCC, questioned 327 social workers online in May about their experiences.