Friday, October 20th, 2023, marks one year since the publication of the final IICSA report (Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse), which detailed the investigation into Child Sexual Abuse in England & Wales over a period of decades and proposed a package of important recommendations to prevent future child sexual abuse.
At the conclusion of the Inquiry, Legacy benches were installed at locations across England and Wales. These benches provide a reflective space and commemorate the experiences of thousands of victims and survivors of child sexual abuse. This installation was seen as a way of prompting further conversations about child sexual abuse and continuing the legacy of IICSA, ensuring a continued focus on the needs and issues of survivors.
These benches are an important visual reminder of the victims and survivors who came forward to share their lived experiences with IICSA and their request for a different approach to addressing child sexual abuse. However, the majority of IICSA’s recommendations have yet to be acted upon. Organisations, victims, survivors, and supporters across England and Wales are coming together to mark the anniversary of the launch of the IICSA final report and bring attention back to the legacy benches and the important message they represent.
While all of IICSA’s recommendations are important as a package, we believe that the recommendation for a Child Protection Authority (CPA) for England and Wales and the recommendation for a cabinet-level minister for children to oversee the CPA are key. These measures are essential to giving children’s welfare and safety the importance and attention they deserve.
What is happening up to October 20, 2023?
From Monday 9th October to Friday 20th October 2023, we want to encourage survivors and supporters to take photos of the IICSA legacy benches near them across England & Wales. You can find the benches’ locations here.
We would like you to upload your images to social media using the hashtag #ActOnIICSA. Whether you choose to be in the photo or not, you could simply capture an image of the bench and plaque.
These images will serve as a reminder and expression of support for everyone who has experienced child sexual abuse. This campaign will reiterate our pledge to survivors who took part in IICSA and those who were not able to. We stand with you and will not rest until safeguards and support are in place for all survivors.
Legacy Bench Meeting – October 20, 2023
We invite survivors and supporters to join us on October 20th 2023, in London at the Victoria Embankment Gardens bench. We will meet at the bench at 12:00 on this date to show our support for #ActOnIICSA and continue the conversation and actions started by the publication of the IICSA report. Here is the link to register attendance at this event.
We hope you will join us to amplify the voice of survivors, either on social media by liking, commenting, and sharing our posts, or by posting images and comments of your own using the #ActOnIICSA hashtag, or come join us on October 20th at 12:00 at the Victoria Embankment Gardens bench.