A report by Victim Support and the University of Bedfordshire for the All Party Parliamentary Group on Victims and Witnesses of Crime has found that some young people see crimes such as robbery, theft and assault as a normal part of growing up and do not even see themselves as victims.
Matthew Reed, Chief Executive of The Children’s Society, said: 'It’s shocking that nobody knows how many children fall victim to crime every year. Understanding the scale of the problem is an essential first step to tackling it.
'Part of the challenge, as we know through our direct work with children, is how difficult it is for young people - particularly those who have been groomed or sexually exploited - to tell someone about abuse they experienced.
'When children are brave enough to come forward, too often the professionals who should be protecting them let them down, by failing to believe them or by dismissing them as troublesome. Overall professionals must get better at identifying children who may be victims, supporting them when they disclose abuse and helping them after they have come forward. And schools need to teach children about healthy relationships and consent, so young people are better able to recognise abuse and know where to turn.'
Research suggests that only a tiny fraction of the 100,000 UK under 16s who run away yearly are given emergency shelter by councils.
Nearly two-thirds of the 210 English, Welsh and Scottish councils who responded to the Railway Children charity survey offered no under-16s accommodation in the past year. The research found just 157 children were offered this sort of support.
Council leaders acknowledged a shortage of emergency accommodation. However, only about half the local authorities kept figures on how many times such emergency accommodation was used, the study said.
The research was prompted by growing concern about runaway children. It highlighted how all refuges but one for young children had closed by this year.
"Inconsistent use of local authority emergency accommodation was leaving young people without a safe place at the time they need it most," it said.
From 8th December ICT will be running a pop-up WiFi support desk in the Hub at the Bedford Campus. The desk will be manned by ICT from 9.00 am - 5.00 pm for the next two weeks and then again in the first two weeks of January to help students and staff with any relevant WiFi issues. Similar desks will be in operation during this period at the Luton Campus in the Campus Centre and Park Street receptions.
Information on connecting to eduroam (for staff and students and visitors from participating institutions) and the guest network (for all other visitors) is also available on the main University web site at: