“People are now asking me why Sir Jimmy Saville’s victims were not able to ask for help. The thing about sexual abuse is that people suffering it feel defiled – they take on the shame and the guilt.”
– Esther Rantzen
If you have been a victim of childhood abuse, the mental scars will remain long after the abuse has stopped. You may struggle to keep your life on track, find it hard to maintain adult relationships, to find it hard to trust anyone. “Life can be a struggle, but a small comfort could be that you may be entitled to compensation against the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority. CICA UK is a non-government run site, set up by TDP Solicitors, that claims from CICA on behalf of victims of abuse”
There are certain criteria’s that you should meet, although each case is examined on a case by case basis. One of the main criteria is that you needed to have reported the case to the police, even if a passage of time has gone and the abuse had occurred some years previously. Other criteria could be:-
- Make your application to the CICA within 2 years of the crime
- OR within 2 years of first reporting the matter to the police
- OR by your 20th birthday
The type of abuse that you can make a claim about varies. It could be sexual, physical or mental abuse, and there are people you can speak to, in full confidence, through CICA UK. Talking could help you to understand your own emotions and the type of abuse you faced, and this can then help you make a decision on how you know want to proceed. CICA UK can also advise you if you think an organisation, rather than an individual was responsible for your abuse, for instance, if you were in the case system during childhood. They will be able to advise you. Even if you do not wish to look for compensation, their help and support may help you turn a corner.
Victims of abuse often feel that they are abused both by the perpetrator, and then by the system that should protect them. CICA UK may well offer the support and help that you need to move on.