Child Abuse and the Courts

Iceland has made the news recently in regards their national soccer team at the European Championship. Iceland has also made the news in regards to innovative procedures that allow testimony from victims of child abuse while protecting them being cross examined in a court of law. The prospect of having to go to court, face their abusers and be cross examined is often a deterrent for people coming forward with legitimate child abuse issues.

Iceland has recently initiated a program whereby the testimony of the victim can be received behind closed doors, in sessions conducted by an experienced person and monitored remotely by judges and lawyers. Members of the legal profession can even feed appropriate questions via an intermediary to the victim via a headset. The victim feels much less threatened in comfortable and informal surroundings and therefore much more likely to come forward in the first place. Perhaps this method of testimony should be considered in the UK.