Child Exploitation - information for family and friends

Child Criminal Exploitation

Child Criminal Exploitation occurs where an individual or group takes advantage of a person under the age of 18 and may coerce, manipulate or deceive a child or young person under that age into any criminal activity

  1. In exchange for something the victim needs or wants, and/or
  2. For the financial advantage or increased status of the perpetrator or facilitator and/or
  3. Through violence or the threat of violence. The victim may be exploited even if the activity appears consensual (i.e. moving drugs or the proceeds of drugs from one place to another).

Child Criminal Exploitation does not always involve physical contact; it can also occur through the use of technology.  (Home Office 2018)

Child Sexual Exploitation

Child Sexual Exploitation is a form of child sexual abuse. It occurs where an individual or group takes advantage of an imbalance of power to coerce, manipulate or deceive a child or young person under the age of 18 into sexual activity

 (a) In exchange for something the victim needs or wants, and/or

 (b) For the financial advantage or increased status of the perpetrator or facilitator.

The victim may have been sexually exploited even if the sexual activity appears consensual. Child Sexual Exploitation does not always involve physical contact; it can also occur through the use of technology. (Home Office 2017)

Children or young people may be tricked into believing they’re in a loving, consensual relationship. They might be invited to parties and given drugs and alcohol. They may also be groomed online.

Some children and young people are trafficked into or within the UK for the purpose of exploitation. Sexual exploitation can also happen to young people in gangs.

Resources for Parents and Carers

Barnardo’s – Spot the signs
Barnardo’s have published advice parents and young people about CSE which is available on their website Barnardos -what we do protecting children - CSE 

Parents Against Child Exploitation (Pace)
Parents Against Child Sexual Exploitation (Pace) work alongside parents and carers whose children are or are at risk of being sexually exploited by perpetrators external to the family. They also offer guidance and training to professionals on how child sexual exploitation affects the whole family. View their website to read more Pace UK

The ‘Keeping it together’ parent’s guide to coping with CSE and other resources to share with parents can be found on their website Pace UK info for parents

Their relational safeguarding model demonstrates best practice in working with families affected by CSE and is also available at Pace UK

Training for Parents/Carers
Pace, in partnership with Virtual College, has launched an interactive online information package for parents on the signs of child sexual exploitation. This free tool is designed to equip parents with the information and knowledge to safeguard children from this abuse – go to the Pace website Pace UK to access the tool.

CEOP Thinkuknow programme
‘The Parents’ and Carers’ Guide to the Internet’, has been created by CEOP to provide a light-hearted and realistic look at what it takes to be a better online parent. The site also age specific advice for parents and carers of primary and secondary school age children. Read more on their website thinkuknow

Children’s Society
Lots of good advice on keeping the children you love safe – read more on their website Children's Society Criminal Exploitation and County Lines    Children's Society - CSE

Parents Protect
Links to sources of help, advice and support available to people with concerns about child sexual abuse. The links are to some of the organisations and agencies you can contact for information and are continually updated. Find out more on their website Parents Protect

Stop it now!
Stop it Now! UK and Ireland is a useful website for anyone with concerns about child sexual abuse. The Stop it Now! campaign operates a confidential freephone helpline for any adult with concerns, including those worried about the sexual behaviour of another adult towards children, those worried about their own thoughts or behaviour towards children and those concerned about the worrying sexual behaviour of a child or young person.  Call their helpline on tel: 0808 1000 900 or email at help@stopitnow.org.uk  or go to their website stopitnow to find out more.

Family Lives - Parentline Plus
Parentline Plus is a national charity that works for, and with, parents. It works to offer help and support through an innovative range of free, flexible, responsive services – shaped by parents for parents. Go to their website Parentline plus to find out more or call their helpline on tel: 0808 800 2222

NSPCC
The NSPCC is the UK’s leading charity dedicated to stopping child abuse. You can call their child protection helpline on tel: 0808 800 5000 or contact them via email at help@nspcc.org.uk or visit their website NSPCC

The Home Office Disclosure Scheme
If you are worried about someone in your child’s life, you can get them checked by the police to see if they have a record of child sexual offences. Find out what you need to do to get someone checked.

If you suspect a child is at risk of Child Exploitation, act on it and don’t wait.

Reporting Concerns

  • Children's Social Care (Contact Point) – 01274 435600
  • Emergency Duty Team – 01274 431010
  • Police Non-Emergency – 101
  • Police Emergency – 999
  • Barnardos Turnaround – 01274 513300
  • Pace support for parents and information – 0113 240 3040