Child Sexual Exploitation
What is Child Sexual Exploitation?
Child sexual exploitation (CSE) is a form of child abuse
involving children and young people receiving something, such as
accommodation, drugs, gifts or affection, as a result of them
performing sexual activities, or having others perform sexual
activities on them. It can occur without physical contact, when
children are groomed to post sexual images of themselves on the
CSE is a hidden issue taking place out of public view.
Practitioners often do not identify it and young people themselves
frequently do not recognise themselves as the abused. It can be
difficult to get an accurate picture of the risk of sexual
The link between children being sexually exploited and children
going missing is very strong. Some 140,000 children go missing from
home or care in the UK each year and it has been estimated that
running away places around a quarter of these at risk of serious
harm. Children and young people who run away may be ‘pushed away’
following abuse or other factors or ‘pulled away’ wanting to be
near friends or because they are being exploited by adults.
Bedfordshire CSE Strategy
Risk assessment toolkit
Awareness raising posters
Key facts about CSE
Sexual exploitation often starts around the age of 10 years old.
Girls are usually targeted from age 10 and boys from age 8. It
affects both girls and boys and can happen in all communities.
Any person can be targeted but there are some particularly
vulnerable groups: Looked After Children, Children Leaving Care and
Children with Disabilities.
Victims of CSE may also be trafficked (locally, nationally and
Over 70% of adults involved in prostitution were sexually
exploited as children or teenagers.
Sexual violence or abuse against children represents a major
public health and social welfare problem within UK society,
affecting 16% of children under 16. That is approximately 2 million
What are the signs and symptoms of child sexual
Grooming and sexual exploitation can be very difficult to
identify. Warning signs can easily be mistaken for ‘normal’ teenage
behaviour and/or development. However, parents, carers, school
teachers and practitioners are advised to be alert to the following
signs and symptoms:
- inappropriate sexual or sexualised
- repeat sexually transmitted infections; in
girls repeat pregnancy, abortions, miscarriage
- having unaffordable new things (clothes, mobile) or expensive
habits (alcohol, drugs)
- going to hotels or other unusual locations
to meet friends
- getting in/out of different cars driven by
- going missing from home or
- having older boyfriends or
- associating with other young people
involved in sexual exploitation
- truancy, exclusion, disengagement with
school, opting out of education altogether
- unexplained changes in behaviour or
personality (chaotic, aggressive, sexual)
- drug or alcohol misuse
- getting involved in crime
- injuries from physical assault, physical
restraint, sexual assault
Spotting the signs
HEE, in association with the Department of Health, and with the
support and help of healthcare staff and professional membership
organisations has produced a video that provides advice on
identifying the signs of child sexual exploitation in vulnerable
These and many more questions are answered in a new video
produced by HEE in association with the Department of Health, and
with the support and help of healthcare staff and professional
The video seeks to support healthcare and other community staff
on identifying the signs of child sexual exploitation in vulnerable
To view the video click here
Child sexual exploitation: definition and guidance
updated Feb 2017
The Department for Education (DfE) has published a definition of
child sexual exploitation (CSE) and a guide for practitioners and
managers. Advice for practitioners working with children
includes: a definition of CSE; potential indicators of CSE; how
children are sexually exploited; and how sexual exploitation
affects children. Guidance for managers and leaders includes:
prevention, educating practitioners, educating children and young
people, and educating parents and carers.
The DfE has published annexes to the guidance. Annex A covers
adolescent development and includes: transitions; relationships;
key risks and responses. Annex B is a guide to disruption orders
and legislation setting out examples of disruption measures, civil
powers and criminal offences which may be used by
The government response to a consultation on revising the
definition of child sexual exploitation has also been
DfE Date: 16 February 2017
Further information: Child
sexual exploitation: definition and a guide for practitioners,
local leaders and decision makers working to protect children from
child sexual exploitation (PDF)
Child sexual exploitation: annexes to definition and a guide for
practitioners, local leaders and decision makers working to protect
children from child sexual exploitation (PDF)
Definition of child sexual exploitation: government consultation
Bedford Borough, Central Bedfordshire and Luton
CSEG (Child Sexual Exploitation Group)
New guidance for the Child Sexual Exploitation Group (CSEG)
which replaces the previous Child Sexual Exploitation Panel (CSEP).
The role of the multi-agency CSEG is to ensure a co-ordinated
multi-agency approach to concerns about child sexual exploitation
and to maintain an overview of emerging child sexual exploitation
issues in Bedfordshire.
This guidance will take practitioners through the process if
they have a concern about a child or young person being a victim of
CSE or if they have any information about a person being a
perpetrator of CSE or concerns about locations being used for
This guidance found be found by clicking on
this link here
In due course it will be uploaded on to the Pan Bedfordshire
Interagency Child Protection Procedures http://bedfordscb.proceduresonline.com/index.htm
If you have any queries regarding the CSEG please contact your
local CSE SPOCs or the Pan-Bedfordshire CSE Co-Ordinator:
Bedford Borough: Lesley Lown (Lesley.Lown@bedford.gov.uk)
Central Bedfordshire: Claire Collins
Luton: Catherine Doyle (Catherine.email@example.com)
Pan-Beds CSE Co-Ordinator: Lisa Robinson Lisa.firstname.lastname@example.org
Risk Assessment Form
Child Sexual Abuse
Through Exploitation local leaflet
To assist the Police in building a picture of
what CSE looks like in Bedford Borough, where it is happening and
who is involved then they require your intelligence. So for example
if you have observed a car regularly being at a location where
young people congregate share the details of the car and a
description of the occupants. If a young person changes their
appearance and appears to have money a new phone etc. and talks
about going out to parties, then share this information with the
Police using the Intelligence reporting form below.
Intelligence reporting form
notes from the Police Intel Hub on the use of the form
Bedfordshire Police, the University of Bedfordshire, Bedford
Borough, Luton Borough and Central Bedfordshire Councils,
Crimestoppers, and the three local safeguarding children boards are
joining forces to tackle child sexual exploitation (CSE) with this
The campaign aims to educate people on the signs that someone is
being exploited, and increase the number of cases that are
As part of the campaign, a new website has been launched which
contains links and information about all of the agencies taking
part, and explains how you can access help and support, as well as
where to report CSE concerns.
Jenny Myers, Independent Chair of the Bedford Borough
Safeguarding Children Board, said: “Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE)
can be tricky for people to recognise which is why a tip-off from
someone who may have noted something which doesn’t seem quite
right, can be so incredibly valuable. The joint website is a great
resource for those seeking more information on CSE.”
If you are concerned about CSE, you can call police on 101 or
visit https://bedfordshireagainstcse.org/ for further
Child sexual exploitation is when people use the power they have
over young people to sexually abuse them. In this video series
experts explain who is most vulnerable, typical behaviour patterns
of the abusers and how to spot the signs. You’ll also get advice on
what you can do if someone you know is at risk or has been a victim
Watch the video series about
Response to CSE in Bedfordshire in the Three Boroughs.
Click here to see the full report.
Local Raising awareness posters available be clicking
Trailer. A promotional trailer for CEOP's new educational
resource aimed at preventing CSE
Version. A CEOP educational resource.
short CEOP film about a girl who sends images of herself on her
exploitation of Children: can you recognise the signs? A
20 minute film to raise awareness about grooming and sexual
exploitation using the Eastenders story of Whitney.Innocence.
Short film from Barnardo's about a girl that is groomed by an older
NWG posters - Girl
poster - Boy
Short Films for Practice - CSE Research
These 12 films are aimed at anyone who wants to access learning
from the latest research on child sexual exploitation (CSE), in a
short accessible form.
The films share the findings of a range of studies undertaken by
researchers in ‘The International Centre: Researching Child Sexual
Exploitation, Violence and Trafficking’ at the University of
Bedfordshire, as well as drawing on wider CSE literature.
Most of the films are under two minutes long. They can be
watched in the office, shared with colleagues or friends, or used
in training contexts.
Each film is accompanied by a short briefing document that
outlines the evidence in more detail, with references and links to
the original research, and questions for reflection.
Click on this link to go to the UOB website
Tangled Web, How Child Sexual Exploitation is Becoming More
Office of the Children's
into Child Sexual Exploitation in Gangs and Groups
Out of Sight, Out of Mind CEOP Thematic Analysis - Executive
NPSCC Child Trafficking - Key statistics and Guidance
Wud U? Is an educational tool
for teachers and care professionals who interact with young people
that might be at risk of sexual exploitation?
The app aims to educate young
people about behaviour that could put them at risk of being sexual
exploited, through illustrated, interactive stories.
Wud U? will enable you to
present sensitive issues to your group of young people. You will be
able to discuss the decisions that they would make if they were in
the same situation as the characters within the stories. This app
also offers advice about their decisions.
Through the Wud U? app you
Demonstrate how young people
can make safe decisions.
Provide your group with more
information about sexual exploitation, from a trusted source.
Help us raise awareness of
sexual exploitation by sharing the Wud U? app.
New gold member to the National
Working Group (NWG)
We are pleased to inform you that we have now activated our
Gold account with the National Working Group (http://www.nwgnetwork.org/)
who are a Charitable organisation, who disseminate information to
professionals working on the issue of child sexual
exploitation (CSE) and trafficking within the UK.
This means as a BBSCB member you and your
staff (through an application process) will have access to the many
So to access the resources please contact
Cheryl Stevens, NWG Network Coordinator email: email@example.com and
mention that you are working in Bedford.
Staff at all Local Authority Bedford Borough
schools can be added to the account and have full access to Cody’s
Choices and Deans Choices and the other 800+ resources.
Having clarified with NWG all Academies, Free
and Private Schools will need to join NWG in their own
The NWG Network and The Children’s Society have developed a
campaign pack supporting local safeguarding children boards to work
with retail, transport, leisure and hospitality businesses to
protect children in their communities from child sexual
here for this campaign packack includes posters, leaflets and
training materials for staff. It will help employees to look out
for signs of exploitation, grooming and trafficking and provide
information on what to do if they are concerned about a child. It
will also assist employers to carry out risks assessments and
vetting of staff.
A report from the Office of the Children's Commissioner's
Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in gangs and groups.
report click here.
Puppet on a string report.
Exploitation tools on YouTube
The NSPCC has produced three short animations, available on
YouTube, which each deal with the subject of sexual exploitation in
a different way. The animations attempt to clarify the complex
issues involved and offer starting points for discussion with young
people who might be experiencing similar problems. The animations
can be found here:
'My story is real','When
someone cares', 'Jay'
Sexual Abuse of children and young people through