This report is a summary of the Swedish report
Following a substantial increase in the number of cases of (non-sexual) child assault reported to the police during the early 1990s, the Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention conducted a study comparing the cases of parental child assault against 0—6-year-olds1 reported to the police in the years 1990 and 1997 respectively (Brå 2000). The study showed that as the number of reported offences had increased, the nature of the assaults reported to the police had changed in a number of respects. The violence reported to the police had generally become less serious in nature and an increasing number of offences were being reported by parents and the social services, whereas the number of offences reported by doctors and other healthcare workers appeared to have actually declined. In combination, the results strongly indicated that the propensity to report cases of violence against children in the home had increased substantially among parents and social services staff, and that it was this increase in reporting propensities that explained the increase in the number of reported assault offences against young children registered
by the police.
In 2010, the Swedish Government instructed the National Council for Crime Prevention to conduct a follow-up of the study described above, this time with a focus on the trend in reported assaults during the period 2000—2009. As in the National Council's previous study, the study was to focus on non-sexual physical assaults on children aged 0—6 by parents. One difference by comparison with the previous study was that the Council's instruction also included the task of describing both the extent to which the reported offences resulted in an indictment and a conviction, and the sentences awarded in connection with such convictions.
© The Swedish National Council for Crime Prevention, 2012
Author: David Shannon