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Child sexual exploitation

Sexual exploitation affects thousands of children and young people across the UK every year. It is an illegal activity by people who have power over young people and use it to sexually abuse them.

This can involve a broad range of exploitative activity, from seemingly ‘consensual’ relationships and informal exchanges of sex for attention, accommodation, gifts or cigarettes, through to very serious organised crime.

As a parent or carer, you could have an important role to play in protecting children from exploitation, helping to cut them free from this horrific form of child abuse.

Barnardos have produced leaflets for parents and carers and young people to help them spot the signs of sexual exploitation. There is also support and further information for parents at Pace UK.

If you think that a child or young person may be at risk of sexual exploitation, please contact Children’s Social Care or the police straight away. For further information see our report child abuse page.

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