Information and resources for people who work with young people or have a duty of care towards a child. If you work with or come into contact with young people, it is your responsibility to make sure that you:
- Understand what child sexual exploitation is
- Can recognise the warning signs
- Know who to contact and how to report any concerns
Child sexual exploitation is not a new phenomenon, nor is it confined to Greater Manchester. However, it is has entered the public consciousness in recent years, due to some very high profile cases within Greater Manchester and other parts of the country.
It is a form of child abuse – affecting boys and girls under the age of 18 – where the vulnerable young victim is given something (e.g. food, money or drugs) in return for sexual activity with the abuser or others. It is an insidious crime that can be hard to detect and there is clear evidence that child sexual exploitation is currently under-reported.
Involvement in exploitative relationships is characterised by the child or young person’s limited availability of choice as a result of their social, economic or emotional vulnerability. Often the young person does not even recognise the coercive nature of the relationship and does not see themselves as a victim of exploitation. This means they are unlikely to report the abuse.
Make sure you know who the child protection / safeguarding lead in your agency is and be aware of the procedure to follow if you have concerns about a young person. If you are worried or in any doubt, get help from your local specialist exploitation team.
Information sharing and awareness raising is key to tackling child sexual exploitation. Our campaign and resources page contains videos and posters you can use to inform your colleagues and educate young people. Please do all you can to promote our resources on your website and social media channels.