A report has been released, damning the culture of acceptance of child sexual abuse at Ampleforth and Downside, two of the UK's foremost Catholic independent schools. The report found that the true scale of sexual abuse at the schools is likely to have been even greater than has been proven in the courts.
So far, ten people have been convicted or cautioned in relation to sexual offences at the schools, and the report found that "Many perpetrators did not hide their sexual interests from the children. The blatant openness of these activities demonstrates there was a culture of acceptance of abusive behaviour."
Both schools destroyed records of complaints and transferred suspected perpetrators elsewhere, rather than taking them out of schools. The Catholic church in England has noted the report's conclusions and says it stands by apologies already made on its behalf to victims and survivors.
We at AO Advocates support all victims and survivors at these and other schools and welcome reports like the ones conducted at these schools, exposing abuses and supporting victims' and survivors' claims.