The victims' - survivors' perceptions of participating in the Hughes inquiry

Melendy, Michelle Lynn (1993) The victims' - survivors' perceptions of participating in the Hughes inquiry. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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    Available under License - The author retains copyright ownership and moral rights in this thesis. Neither the thesis nor substantial extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's permission.
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Abstract

The number of reported cases of child sexual abuse has increased over the past ten years. This increase in reporting coincides with society's heightened awareness of the extent that children in our society are being victimized. Professionals working in this field have been eager to develop their skills in responding and treating this population. Questions have been raised surrounding past interventions from Professionals. -- In September 1989, the Hughes Inquiry under Judge Samuel Hughes was established in St. John's, Newfoundland. The purpose of this Judicial Inquiry was to examine police investigations in the 1970's that dealt with allegations of physical and sexual abuse at the Mt. Cashel Orphanage. This Inquiry has addressed why the system appears to have failed the boys who were under the care of the Christian Brothers while at the Orphanage. -- This study examines the perceptions of the victims'/survivors' experiences of participating in the Inquiry. Qualitative methodology utilizing exploratory interviews was employed to understand their subjective experience. Indepth exploratory interviews were carried out with three victims/survivors. The data analysis is emphasized as an inductive process. Thus, the themes emerged from the raw data. -- The victims'/survivors' perception of whether or not participating in the Hughes Inquiry was helpful depended upon a number of factors. These are organized around four themes with issues relating to shame, trust, empowerment and anger. These findings are discussed in relation to the traumagenic model of child sexual abuse provided by Finkelhor and Browne (1986). The limitations of the study and the implications for future judicial inquiries is explored. This study highlights the importance of the phenomenological perspective in qualitative research which seeks to understand people's experiences in their own terms.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
URI: http://research.library.mun.ca/id/eprint/876
Item ID: 876
Additional Information: Bibliography: leaves 140-144
Department(s): Social Work, School of
Date: 1993
Date Type: Submission
Geographic Location: Canada--Newfoundland and Labrador--Avalon Peninsula--St. John's
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Mount Cashel Orphanage (St. John's, N.L.); Royal Commission of Inquiry into the Response of the Newfoundland Criminal Justice System to Complaints; Adult child sexual abuse victims

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