Know the warning signs of sexual exploitation this Christmas

  • 4 December 2019
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Know the warning signs of sexual exploitation this Christmas

With the festive season approaching, people are reminded to be aware of the key warning signs of child sexual exploitation (CSE)

The see me, hear me partnership, led by West Midlands Police and councils across the West Midlands, is highlighting the signs of this hidden crime in the run up to Christmas, to help people identify concerns and get help.

It’s important to look out for anything unusual when a child or young person receives unexplained money or gifts this Christmas as this could indicate they may be at risk of abuse.

This, along with other unusual behaviour such as mood swings, skipping school, being secretive and staying out late, are all signs parents, carers, schools, professionals and young people should not ignore.

CSE can affect both girls and boys, regardless of their culture and background. Being aware of the warning signs, and acting on them early, can help prevent abuse happening or escalating. We all have our part to play in protecting our children and young people from this horrific abuse.

Find out more about the campaign at the website www.seeme-hearme.org.uk  and see what you can do to help protect children and young people and warning signs to look out for

It is child abuse and involves perpetrators grooming their victims in various ways, such as in person, via mobiles or online, to gain their trust before emotionally, physically (including threats to harm) and sexually abusing them.

Anyone who is concerned about the safety of a young person should call West Midlands Police on 101, speak in confidence to Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 or in an emergency call 999. Childline also have counsellors available online at www.childline.org.uk

The See Me, Hear Me campaign was launched in June 2014 by Dudley, Wolverhampton, Sandwell, Walsall, Coventry, Birmingham and Solihull councils, along with West Midlands Police, to raise awareness of child sexual exploitation.

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