Child sex exploitation on the rise

Sex exploitation web

Barnardo's has seen an increase in the amount of people using its child sexual exploitation services

12th October 2017 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

The amount of young people who have experienced or are at risk of sexual exploitation is on the rise.

Barnardo’s has reported a 38% increase in the number of people its child sexual exploitation (CSE) services are supporting across the UK.

In the 12 months to March 2017, the charity’s CSE services worked directly with 3,430 children, young people, parents and carers, many of whom have experienced, or are at risk of, sexual abuse and grooming. This is up from 2,486 in 2015-16.

The charity says the sharp increase is down to local authorities recognising that they need to confront the problem of CSE head on and commission wider-reaching services to combat child sexual abuse.

Barnardo’s chief executive Javed Khan said: “Having trained frontline professionals to identify children and young people vulnerable to sexual abuse in their communities, we have seen a huge increase of referrals to our child sexual exploitation services.

“Every child needs and deserves a strong family, safe childhood and a positive future to thrive. We plan to make a critical contribution to this through our campaigning and prevention work, while tackling difficult issues like grooming and child sexual exploitation.”

Barnardo’s 2017 Impact Report also reveals that its 1,000 essential services supported a record number of more than 272,000 children, young people, parents and carers in 2016-17 – nearly 10% (9.68%) more than 2016-15.

A government study into tackling CSE earlier this year indicated a 24% increase in child sex abuse offences, with police recording 41,000 offences from March 2015-16 compared to 33,000 the previous year. It also estimated that 5% of 11 to 17 year olds had been physically sexually abused, equating to 50 children in each state secondary school in England and Wales.