Improving policy and practice responses for men sexually abused in childhood

Improving policy and practice responses for men sexually abused in childhood

Gary Foster, Cameron Boyd and Patrick O'Leary

ACSSA Wrap No. 12 — November 2012
Improving policy and practice responses for men sexually abused in childhood

Key messages

Although there is a growing body of evidence and research on male victim/survivors of child sexual abuse and its impacts, it has not yet become the subject of a considered public policy interventions.

A public health approach that taps into learning from work with female victim/survivors and recent men's health strategies offers a framework for action that has the potential to assist male victim/survivors of child sexual abuse.

Male victim/survivors of sexual victimisation are a diverse group with diverse needs. Evidence suggests that in order to support healing and recovery it is necessary to create gender appropriate services and interventions that:

  • reach out and engage men;
  • address barriers to men's help seeking;
  • assist men and their families to build supportive relationships;
  • provide opportunities for group support; and
  • develop public discussions that offer hope for an improved future.

 

A significant number of men in Australia are victim/survivors of child sexual abuse. While a growing number of services offer therapeutic support and counselling for men, the issue of men's sexual victimisation has not become a public policy issue. It is suggested that conceptualising and responding to male sexual victimisation as a public health issue, will help to improve community responses to men and their families.

Authors and Acknowledgements

Gary Foster PhD is Manager of Anglicare Southern Queensland Sexual Assault Services - Living Well. Cameron Boyd is a Counsellor/Advocate, Northern Centre Against Sexual Assault. Patrick O'Leary PhD is Head of School of Human Services and Social Work, Griffith University.

Publication details

ACSSA Wrap
No. 12
Published by the Australian Institute of Family Studies, November 2012.
20 pp.
ISSN: 
1834-0148
ISBN: 
978-1-922038-16-6
Suggested citation:

Foster, G., Boyd, C., & O'Leary, P. (2012). Improving policy and practice responses for men sexually abused in childhood (ACSSA Wrap No. 14). Melbourne: Australian Centre for the Study of Sexual Assault, Australian Institute of Family Studies.

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