Savile’s victims were ignored and accused of lying, NSPCC report says

Savile’s victims were dismissed as liars when they tried to tell adults about their attacks, NSPCC report for HMIC will warn

File photo of Jimmy Savile

File photo of Jimmy Savile Photo: PA
Jimmy Savile’s victims were ignored and accused of lying when they tried to tell adults they had been sexually assaulted, a report will say this week.
Many of the children and young people who were targeted by the celebrity were simply too young to understand the full implications of what had happened to them.
When they were old enough to realise the seriousness of their experiences, some decided it would be better to try to forget than to complain to the police.
Those victims who did want to talk to their teachers or parents about their experiences now say they were often dismissed or told to stop inventing stories.
The findings are contained in a report, to be published by the NSPCC children’s charity on Monday, which is based on in-depth discussions with 28 of Savile’s victims.
The television and radio presenter, who died in 2011, is believed to have abused hundreds of children and teenagers during a prolific career as a sex offender spanning 50 years. Many of his attacks are said to have taken place on BBC property or in children’s homes and hospitals.
When the revelations first became public two years ago, the NSPCC was inundated with calls from victims who wanted to talk about their experiences.
The charity completed a joint report last year with the Metropolitan Police which documented statements of possible abuse relating to Savile from 450 people.
There have been claims in recent months that there could be up to 1,000 victims of Savile’s sexual abuse but the true extent may never be known.
The NSPCC was commissioned to explore the experiences of victims by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary, which was concerned that so many victims felt unable to come forward while Savile was still alive.
The charity conducted in-depth focus group research with 28 of Savile’s victims who had contacted its helpline and were happy to discuss their experiences.
The NSPCC’s report is not expected to contain major new recommendations for police or other agencies, or significant findings relating to the Savile scandal. However, it is likely to highlight the difficulties which Savile’s child victims faced in asking for help from teachers and, in some cases, their own family members. In the focus groups, victims also described how Savile behaved and what he said to them when they met him.

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