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    Photo of Chris Hughes, Hotline Director

    Our Hotline Director: Children deserve more

    By Chris Hughes

    As another operational year in the Hotline closes, a new one quietly and seamlessly begins in the Hotline without fanfare or fuss.

    As with all New Year’s resolutions or end of year reports, date and time markers help us reflect and measure what we achieved and gives us focus to consider our goals and ambitions for the year ahead.

    I am fortunate to head up an exceptionally dedicated team of analysts who, each year, commit to doing a job that is challenging at both a personal and professional level; their work requires resilience, courage, and a selflessness that few of us are expected to face in our daily jobs.

    We should all rightly celebrate the work of the Analysts and Content Assessors; however, the sad truth is that as each new year quietly starts, we know that there will inevitably be much more to do in the year ahead, with many more children for the first-time becoming victims of online sexual abuse while their images are publicly traded and shared and treated as a commodity.

    The insights and statistics provided in this report are important for the very reason that each statistic represents the underserved and abhorrent abuse or exploitation of a child by an adult.

    I have a single ask of everyone reading this report; it is simply that in 2023 we should all find reasons for why we can and should do more. We should not settle or be comfortable with the idea that because we are doing something, we are doing enough.

    Excellent and valued work is being done across different sectors by different stakeholders, and that is to be applauded, but let us all aspire to raise our game in 2023. Our children deserve nothing less.