Child Exploitation and Missing
There is a Child Exploitation and Missing sub group to co-ordinate and ensure the effectiveness of preventing child sexual exploitation. This sub group is currently expanding the remit of their strategy to include all forms of child exploitation. This is in place to ensure an effective response to children and young people at risk of, or being, sexually exploited; including those who go missing from home or care as well as those who are trafficked for the purposes of sexual exploitation and criminal exploitation .
There is also an operational Prevent and Disrupt Group which sits outside the remit of 'Safeguarding Children & Young People in Herefordshire', however themes and trends are fed into the Child Exploitation and Missing sub group to inform their work.
Future governance of the work of this group will be by the Herefordshire Community Safety Partnership, with 'Safeguarding Children & Young People in Herefordshire' receiving regular assurance that the children of Herefordshire are being safeguarded.
Where incidences of child exploitation are uncovered in Herefordshire, immediate action must be taken to involve the police and make an urgent referral to children’s social care to safeguard the child or children involved. Details of how to do this can be found on our Worried about a child? page.
You can download the multi-agency Child Sexual Exploitation Pre-checklist and guidance for professionals. The purpose of the pre-checklist is to enable professionals to assess a child's level of risk of child sexual exploitation (CSE) in a quick and consistent manner. The pre-checklist can be applied to all children (male and female) under the age of 18 years. This pre-checklist is to be used by anyone who has a concern that a child may be being sexually exploited.
If a risk is identified, a CSE Risk Management Meeting must be convened to develop a safeguarding and diversion plan. This meeting must be requested by the Social Work Practitioner and chaired by the Social Work Team Manager. The initial CSE Risk Management Meeting should be held within 5 working days of the completion of the CSE Risk Assessment Tool.
Procedures, including invite request forms and agendas can be found here.
The entire suite of policies will be reviewed and expanded upon to incorporate all areas of child exploitation.
Any professional working with children, young people or care leavers where they are concerned about exploitation should complete this tool. Exploitation includes sexual, criminal, financial, modern slavery and radicalisation. The tool should be completed with reference to Herefordshire's multi agency safeguarding procedures. This suite of tools includes a flowchart, CS & CE Safety Plan Practice Guidance to inform practice, and a form for reporting soft intelligence to the Police.
CSE Resources for Schools
Below are some recommended CSE films and resources for schools. These can be a very useful tool in raising awareness in education session. It is recommended that the resources are used in line with this really helpful Best Practice Checklist, produced by Barnardo's.
CSE BAIT Resource for Secondary Schools and FE Colleges
The BAIT resource pack has been specifically designed for use by secondary schools and FE Colleges, targeted at 14 -17 year old students, to raise awareness and understanding of the dangers of Child Sexual Exploitation. The BAIT resource pack, which includes a DVD and work book, has been distributed to secondary schools and FE colleges in Herefordshire. Please click on the image below to access the online resource pack.
Alright Charlie? - CSE Resource for Primary Schools
This resource is designed for use with children aged 9-11 in primary schools and aims to highlight the warning signs of grooming in an age appropriate way. The resource was designed in consultation with CSE professionals, primary schools teachers and children in years 5 and 6 in primary schools. The resource is accessible to girls AND boys with the viewer never discovering Charlie's gender.
The work book and teacher guidance to accompany the resource is available to download for free from the Blast website. Its is very important the teacher guidance is read before delivering the session.
BLAST Resource - for boys
SELFIE is an educational programme run by West Mercia Rape & Sexual Abuse Support Centre (WMRSASC) designed to increase young people’s (11 to 25-year olds) awareness of sexual violence, harassment and abuse. It aims to equip them with the skills, knowledge and tools to be able to identify, understand and prevent sexual violence, as well as where to go for help and support.
The programme comprises of seven modules which can be delivered as a whole or as standalone sessions. More details on the SELFIE programme can be found by clicking the logo below:
National experiences and specific local intelligence highlight the need for the continued prioritisation of Sexual Exploitation and Trafficking as a key priority action area for 'Safeguarding Children & Young People in Herefordshire'. Our Child Sexual Exploitation Strategy has so far resulted in:
- increased awareness across the children’s workforce of the issue and the actions to take to protect children;
- a better understanding of what sexual exploitation looks like in Herefordshire and therefore a more comprehensive understanding of how to tackle this further;
- and an increase in service provision for victims and perpetrators.
- Compulsory training for taxi drivers, enabling them to recognise the signs of exploitation.
- a new multi agency risk assessment tool and guidance to enable practitioners to fully consider all risks to children and young people.
Meanwhile, our commitment to develop the children's workforce continues through specific training made available at all levels of our Training Strategy and is supported by the Signs and Indicators guide which we expect to be displayed for all staff across all organisations working with children and young people in the County.
It is understood however, that there is more work to be done and in the light of national and local developments in understanding it is timely that the Strategy to tackle Child Sexual Exploitation, which incorporates a comprehensive Delivery Plan, is being redeveloped to focus more upon the strategic needs within the County. This work is being lead by the CE and Missing sub group who will build upon the effective work that the has been progressed to date.
'Safeguarding Children & Young People in Herefordshire' will continue to seek assurance that children and young people are being safeguarded in Herefordshire.
Other useful resources - click the images and links for more information
Appropriate language: Child sexual and/or criminal exploitation
Guidance for professionals published by the Children’s Society
GRT CSE Resources published by the Children’s Society.
Criminal Exploitation and County Lines toolkit published by the Children’s Society.
Children with disabilities
Working with deaf and physically disabled children and young people in relation to child sexual abuse and other forms of exploitation - A toolkit for professionals
Holistic approaches to safeguarding adolescents - a briefing from the Contextual Safeguarding Network
Other sources of useful information which have supported our work include:
- If only someone had listened: Office of the Children's Commissioner's Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in Gangs and Groups Final Report available for download.
- Accelerated report on the emerging findings of the OCC’s Inquiry into Child Sexual Exploitation in Gangs and Groups, with a special focus on children in care also available for download.
- Tackling Child Sexual Exploitation: National Action Plan (November 2011) and its Progress Report (July 2012) by the Department for Education available for download.
- Barnardo's study Puppet On A String (January 2011) and their guidance Tackling child sexual exploitation: Helping local authorities to develop effective responses (2012) available for download.
- Rochdale Borough Safeguarding Children Board’s Review of Multi-agency Responses to the Sexual Exploitation of Children (September 2012) available for download at http://www.rbscb.org/.
Below is a link to a great tool aimed at young people regarding having to attend court as a witness. This is on a site called You&Co - a victim support site aimed at young people.
This sort of reassurance before attendance at court could build confidence ( and be done in company of a carer or Parent / Guardian at home) and assist in the retention of young victims or witnesses willing to attend court by building their confidence around the processes and official people within the court.