Child Sexual Exploitation (or CSE) and abuse takes place in many different ways.
You may have heard of on-street grooming, or when a young person starts to talk about an older ‘boyfriend’ or ‘girlfriend’.
Some people form relationships with young people to use them for sex.
People who do this want young people to think they are a friend, or a boyfriend or girlfriend. They want to gain their trust to get power over them. They might also use bribes, threats, humiliation and even violence to get power over them.
They use that power to force them to have sex, or do sexual things, with them and sometimes with other people.
This is sexual exploitation and it’s a crime.
Sexual exploitation is very harmful to young people with the potential to affect every part of their health, happiness and development.
Another way that CSE happens is when an abuser uses the internet to target a child or young person. You can find more information about how to stay safe online from the information below or by visiting http://www.westyorkshire.police.uk/who-r-u-talking-2.
Do you know how to stay safe online?
- When you are talking to a stranger online, you can’t be sure that the person is who they say they are
- Up-loading personal information online that is viewable to all, could enable people to identify where you live and contact you
- Sexual exploitation can be hard to recognise because you might have developed a friendship/ relationship with someone online
- Sexual exploitation is not normal and is a form of abuse
Would you know how to spot the signs if a friend of yours was being groomed or abused?
If you’re worried about a friend, talking to them about it can be a real help.
It can be really tricky – even a bit nerve wracking – to know how to start a conversation.
Remember – people often want to talk about a problem but wait until they’re asked.
If you need help or advice, please ring Safe Hands on 01422 430495 or contact West Yorkshire Police on 101
You may find these leaflets useful – they explain what CSE is in different languages and have details of agencies that can help.
Did you know?
Calderdale Safeguarding Children Board (CSCB) has received national recognition for its work to protect vulnerable children from sexual exploitation, trafficking and going missing.
The Board was highly commended in the Children’s Services category at the MJ Local Government Achievement Awards which was held in London on 18 June 2015.
Richard Burrows, Chair of the Calderdale Safeguarding Children Board said:
“I am delighted that our work has received this accolade – it is recognition of the innovative and determined approach to tackling CSE which has been taken by the Board and our partners to keep children safe in Calderdale.
“Safeguarding children is everyone’s business. We’re working with social workers, the Police, health workers, teachers and many others working together so that no vulnerable child is left unprotected.”
Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Children and Young People’s Services, Cllr Megan Swift, said:
“This is a great result which acknowledges the work we are doing with children, parents and carers, schools and communities to help them recognise the signs of child sexual exploitation and know what to do if they suspect that something is wrong.”
A dedicated CSE team has been formed which includes social workers, Police, and members from the NHS, education and the Youth Offending Team. The team meets daily to share information which will identify any vulnerable children and intervene if they are felt to be at risk of harm.
Adults and children across Calderdale are being offered training to ‘know the signs of CSE’, with active members of the community being encouraged to sign up to the sessions. Theatre productions have been developed for primary and secondary schoolchildren to educate them on the issue.
Calderdale Council has also commissioned the Children’s Society to deliver the ‘Safe Hands’ project. This provides specialised support for victims of sexual abuse, helping them to move on with their lives.
To make sure you ‘Know the Signs’ visit the West Yorkshire Police website at www.westyorkshire.police.uk/cse(external link).
If you are ever concerned about yourself or someone you know, call 01422 393336 or 0845 1111137 after 5pm.