Posted: 12 August 2015

Seriously Awkward: Katie's Story

The most vulnerable 16 and 17 year olds are falling through the cracks between childhood and adulthood, simply because of their age. Our Seriously Awkward campaign aims to change that.

Join us in calling on the Government to change the law to protect 16 and 17 year olds from abuse, harm and neglect.

A teenage girl with a racoon head
A teenage girl with red hair standing next to a wall

Katie's story

Katie has a learning disability and is raised by her grandparents as her mum struggles to look after her, because of her own disabilities.

Katie was clearly extremely vulnerable. At 13 she was sexually exploited by another child at school. By 15, she is being exploited by adults in her community.

At the age of 16, she ends up in a relationship with a ‘boyfriend’ who abuses her physically, emotionally and sexually.

Funding runs out

Reports have been made to the police, but Katie is often not believed or is even held responsible for the abuse. She eventually gets some support from a women’s group when she’s 17, but it stops when their funding runs out.

Aged 20, she meets another ‘boyfriend’ who seems to be part of some organised exploitation, and cuts her off from the support around her including her work placement.

She ends up in unsafe shared accommodation aged 22, not in education, employment or training. She has not had the support she needed to live safely and reduce her isolation.

Sign our petition

We need your help now to call on the Government to change the law to protect 16 and 17 year olds from harm, abuse and neglect. Please sign our petition

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Sign our petition

Change the law to protect 16 and 17 year olds from abuse, harm and neglect. 

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Luke's story: Something isn't quite right

Posted: 2 July 2015

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Seriously Awkward: Full report

Posted: 25 June 2015