Child Exploitation Resources

What is Child Exploitation?

Child exploitation (CE) is a type of abuse where 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.

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 of county lines dealing, which is where people travel from large cities such as London to sell drugs in new areas.

Child sexual exploitation (CSE) 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, consensual relationship before abusing them. They want to gain their trust. The young people might be invited to parties and given drugs and alcohol. They may also be groomed online. These people might also use bribes, threats, humiliation and even violence to get power over them. They can use that power to force them to have sex, or do sexual things, with them and sometimes with other people. This is sexual exploitation and it’s a crime.

It happens to boys and girls and can be really hard to spot. Often people think they’re in a good relationship, even after things have turned bad.

But there are warning signs. It’s really important that you know how to spot them so you can protect yourself and your friends.

Some children and young people are trafficked into or within the UK for the purpose of sexual exploitation. Sexual exploitation can also happen to young people in gangs.

Think U Know is a website which explains for children of your age what is classed as Child Sexual Exploitation. It has some really interesting videos and resources showing you how easy it is be exploited. Check out The story of Jay.

More CE Information

Child Exploitation Resources page for information for Parents and Carers

Child Exploitation Resources page for information for Professionals