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The Age of Attraction

Bill and Tom are two 'ordinary' men battling a sexual attraction to children. This documentary goes behind the hysteria and tackles a very difficult subject - paedophilia.

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4.3/5 (62 ratings)

Documentary maker: Kirsti Melville

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The Age of Attraction

Bill and Tom are battling a sexual attraction to children they've never understood and find utterly repulsive.

Both are exceedingly ordinary men, one just into his twenties. They defy the stereotype of paedophiles being predatory monsters.

The mere mention of the word paedophile is enough to strike fear into the hearts of parents. It's hard to think of an issue more divisive and more likely to raise hysteria than that of how to handle child sex offenders once they're released from jail.

They're hated on the inside; hated on the outside. But, ultimately, the focus should be on how best to keep children safe.

Bill and Tom have voluntarily spent years in a Perth based community treatment program called SafeCare in Australia. Set up in 1989, SafeCare initially counselled the victims of intra-familial child sexual abuse, along with their families and perpetrators. Ten years later, it controversially broadened its approach and began offering treatment to anyone who had offended, or who was at risk of offending against a child.

But treating child sex offenders and paedophiles is an explosive political issue and when the Coalition came to power in Western Australia two years ago, it cut the funding for offender programs.

This documentary journeys into a world which is rarely if ever spoken about in the public domain - that of adult sexual attraction to children.

In 'The Age of Attraction', Bill and Tom speak openly and honestly about their desires, motivations, self-loathing and confronting their demons through the SafeCare program.

The Age of Attraction was produced by Kirsti Melville and was first aired by 360Documentaries on ABC Radio National in Australia.

First broadcast Saturday 5th February 2011.

An Irish radio documentary from RTÉ Radio 1, Ireland - Documentary on One - the home of Irish radio documentaries.

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