Child pornography leads to hands-on child abuse

Melbourne: A recent study finds that with the dramatic expansion of child pornography market, it becomes a catalyst for some to engage in hands-on abuse of children.

The warning is contained in a research report to the child sex abuse royal commission as it tackles how to abuse-proof institutions where children are at risk, reports News.com.au.

The report prepared by University of Tasmania researchers on child exploitation material in the context of institutions says, while there is no evidence to support a direct causal link between viewing child pornography and abuse, the 'material may be a strong risk factor' for people already disposed to sexual aggression and deviancy with children.

Jeremy Prichard and Caroline Spiranovic, who have published research on the explosion of child porn on the internet, point out that research in the area is relatively new and very few studies have examined child pornography in the context of workplaces.

The possession and distribution of child pornography is a criminal offence in Australia and is referred to as hands-off child abuse, to differentiate it from contact or 'hands-on' abuse.

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