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Safeguarding Booklet • Physical abuse Physical abuse is defined as the use of physical force that may result in bodily injury, physical pain, or impairment. Physical abuse may include but is not limited to such acts of violence as striking (with or without an object), hitting, beating, pushing, shoving, shaking, slapping, kicking, pinching, and burning. • Sexual abuse Sexual abuse, also referred to as molestation, is forcing undesired sexual behaviour by one person upon another. When that force is immediate, of short duration, or infrequent, it is called sexual assault. The offender is referred to as a sexual abuser or (often pejoratively) molester.[1] The term also covers any behaviour by any adult towards a child to stimulate either the adult or child sexually. When the victim is younger than the age of consent, it is referred to as child sexual abuse. • Emotional/psychological abuse Emotional and Psychological abuse includes a range of non-physical controlling behaviours that cause emotional damage and undermine a person’s sense of well-being. Telling someone they are worthless, forcing someone to do things at an exact time or in an exact way, Undermining a person’s actions, thought and beliefs, Telling someone that the domestic violence and abuse is their fault. Not allowing someone to have visitors, or go out or have their own friends and family. Not allowing someone to use the phone, send letters or emails. Getting children to say and do things to upset someone, damaging possessions, Threatening to harm someone. Emotional abuse is often difficult to recognise. It can be very subtle, often being overlooked by a person’s friends and family. The person affected may not even think or feel that abuse is taking place. Emotional abuse can affect women and children experiencing it in many ways. It can leave deep psychological scars and can seriously damage the
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