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Kids in foster care subject to abuse

STOCKHOLM, Sweden, Jan. 31 (UPI) -- An investigation in Sweden says children at state institutions suffer from sexual abuse and violence at significant rates.

A government inquiry into whether victims should be compensated for the abuse to be released Monday and said the abuses reported in January 2010 continue to occur, the Swedish news agency TT reported.

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"Every instance of abuse is clearly a catastrophe," Sara Roxell, a project leader with the Swedish Association and Local Authorities. "The social services aren't where the child is. Therefore regular visits to the homes in which they are placed are needed."

News sources obtained a copy of the report in advance of its release. The inquiry said abuse at state institutions for children hasn't ended and Sweden hasn't implemented any procedures to prevent or discover abuse or neglect.

The 2006 report, released last year, said 61 percent of women and 42 percent of men were victims of sexual abuse when they were in foster homes or orphanages. While the latest inquiry examines if victims should be compensated, it also says children continue to suffer.

"For me, this came like a bolt of lightning. We must be able to guarantee that the children we place aren't subject to abuse," said Dario Espiga, an official with the Gothenburg municipality.

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