Sexual Violence and learning disabilities


We have set up a small project group (Cambridgeshire) to look at issues around sexual abuse/sexual violence involving people with learning disabilities. In particular, we’re looking at the additional vulnerabilities around sexual exploitation and (the lack of) appropriate support services to help people recover from their experiences. We’re working with local Adult Safeuarding, Adult Social Care and Sexual Assault Referral Centre.
If anyone has any thoughts or information I’d really appreciate it.

Hi Amanda. My name is Magda and I’m currently completing a PhD project on sexual health knowledge of people with learning disabilities (including knowledge of sexual abuse and prevention) at the ARU in Cambridge. Please contact me as I would love to know more about your project and could share results of my research and ideas with you. My email address is With best regards, Magda

Hi Amanda and Madga
My name is Sam and I work for Learning Disability Wales on a project called Working Together with Parents Network aimed at improving support for parents with learning disabilities. One of the areas we have identified is the lack of good quality accessible information and training on sex and relationships for people with a learning disability. This can lead to many problems including unplanned pregnancies and an increased risk of sexual and domestic abuse. Lack of understanding around healthy relationships is quite common and this increases their risk of being in abusive relationships, which in turn increases the risk of having their children taken into care. Mothers with learning disabilities are particularly at risk.
I would be very interested in both your pieces of work. My email address is Best wishes Sam Williams

Hi there. My article in the recent issue of Women: A Cultural Review touches on this issue (see reference below). My practice-based research (Central Saint Martins) included interviews with twenty single pregnant women/ single first-time mothers, including some with learning disabilities. I am interested in reaching an audience outside of the LD field through graphic facilitation and cartooning. You can e-mail me on

Penelope Mendonça (2018) Situating Single Mothers through Values-Based Cartooning, Women: A Cultural Review, 29:1, 19-38, DOI: 10.1080/09574042.2018.1425534