Offenders call Stop it Now! helpline

Nearly half of callers to a child protection helpline are from people who have committed offences or those worried they may do so, research has revealed.

The Stop it Now! campaign, which aims to prevent child sex abuse by increasing public awareness, said 45 per cent of some 4,000 calls to its helpline from June 2002 to May 2005 were from abusers or potential abusers.

The campaign said it had found it possible to influence callers so that children could be protected more effectively.

But it criticised the child protection system for not encouraging people to come forward and warned that there were not enough intervention facilities for those who did.

The research also found that a further 30 per cent of calls were from people concerned about someone they knew.

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