Saturday 3 December 2016

Football's Child Sex Abuse Victims Should Contact NSPCC Says Alan Shearer

Former England captain Alan Shearer has spoken of his shock and sadness at the revelations of historical child sex abuse in youth football and urged any victims to come forward and contact a dedicated NSPCC helpline.

The National Police Chiefs' Council said around 350 people across the country had reported abuse allegations as investigations continue in forces across the country. On Thursday, it was revealed that the NSPCC helpline for football received 860 calls in its first week. Shearer, who is an NSPCC ambassador along with current England captain WayneRooney, played club football at Southampton, Blackburn and Newcastle, and offered words of support for anyone affected while encouraging them to come forward.

He said “Over the last week, I have been shocked and deeply saddened to hear of the abuse that colleagues, and in some cases former team-mates, suffered, whilst I am lucky and have no personal experience of the terrible stories that have been described, I know from my work as an NSPCC ambassador the pain and lasting damage abuse can cause. I have nothing but huge respect and admiration for all the players who are now coming forward, bravely breaking years of silence in a bid to help others. They have carried a terrible burden for too long. I am so glad that the Football Association have acted swiftly and that NSPCC has set up a hotline, with their support so that players and others in the sport can come forward and get the help they need. It is okay to speak out, there is help available and you don't need to suffer in silence anymore.”

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