Child exploitation is when an abuser takes advantage of a young person for their own personal gain. This can take many forms, including sexual exploitation or forcing the child to commit crime.â€¯
The most common form of criminal exploitation is when a child is forced to sell drugs for an older person. They are often sold a dream of cash, designer goods and a sense of belonging, but the reality is very different. They end up dirty, hungry and risking their life.
Some of this activity takes the form ofâ€¯county linesâ€¯dealing, which is where people travel from large cities such as London to sell drugs in new areas.
Child sexual exploitation (CSE)â€¯is where a young person is abused by an older person they may initially see as their boyfriend. Perpetrators regularly buy the child gifts and trick them into believing they are in a loving relationship before abusing them.â€¯
These types of abuse can happen to any child, at anytime, anywhere and is why tackling it remains a high priority for us. We aim to raise awareness of child exploitation by;
- helping people recognise the signs
- encourage reporting
- provide support to victims.
Child Exploitation and Online Protection command CEOP is a national police prevention organisation. The website provides information regarding online risks and child exploiation. You can report a concern to them and they have a team of police officers and social workers to support.