Fixed It: What story are you reporting?

The Townsville Bulletin reported that a man who had previously been convicted of indecent treatment of a three year old girl, has pled guilty to guilty to indecent treatment (expose) child under 12 years lineal descendant and indecent treatment of children under 16, in relation to several incidents of sexually abusing his seven year old granddaughter.

I don’t even know where to start. “Grandfather” or “man with a history of sexually abusing children”? They’re the same person but not the same thing. 

“Naked horseback rides”? Or “sexual abuse of a seven year old girl”, a child who had every right to expect men in her family to care for her and protect her from harm, not inflict it. 

The comments about the seriousness – which  depends on physical force and penetration –  are to do with the law not the reporting. It does, however, demonstrate how far we have to go on legislation catching up with what we know about the harm done by grooming, power and manipulation in child sexual abuse cases. 

FixedIt is an ongoing project to push back against the media’s constant erasure of violent men and blaming of innocent victims. If you would like to help fund it – even $5 a month makes a big difference – please consider becoming a Patron

1800 RESPECT
Sexual assault, domestic and family violence counselling and support.
24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 
Ph: 1800 737 732
www.1800respect.org.au

Suicide Call Back Service
24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Ph: 1300 659 467
www.suicidecallbackservice.org.au

Kids Helpline
24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Phone: 1800 55 1800
www.kidshelp.com.au

Men’s Referral Service
Support for men who use violence and abuse.
7 days a week
Ph: 1300 766 491
https://ntv.org.au/get-help/