Child sexual abuse is a form of child abuse that includes sexual activity with a minor. A child cannot consent to any form of sexual activity. In addition to including physical contact between a perpetrator and a child, child sexual abuse includes exhibitionism, cyber-abuse, producing, sharing or owning child pornography and sex trafficking. Incest refers to sexual contact between family members. 93% of survivors under the age of 18 know their abuser; they could be someone they have known for a long time and trust (e.g. neighbour, family friend, coach, teacher), making it more difficult to tell someone about. If you’ve experienced sexual abuse, you are not alone, and it is not your fault.

Warning signs of childhood abuse

– difficulty walking or sitting
– bloody clothing
– pain, itching or burning in the genital area
– frequent urinary or yeast infections
– seems threatened by physical contact
– signs of depression or post-traumatic stress disorder
– self-harming behaviours
– difficulties in school
– nightmares
– bed-wetting
– excessive worry or fear

If you or someone you know is being abused, you can contact Hope 24/7 for support at 1-800-810-0180, and/or you can make a child welfare concern report to Peel Children’s Aid Society at 905-363-6131.



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