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Children/young people at risk of sexual exploitation or who are being sexually exploited are a vulnerable group. All agencies need to work together to identify and protect them.

Sexual exploitation of children and young people involves situations and relationships where they, or a third person or persons, receive something which could be food, accommodation, drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, affection, gifts, money, as a result of them performing sexual activities and/or others performing sexual activities on them. Children are often groomed for future sexual exploitation.

Children/young people can be trafficked for sexual exploitation. Unaccompanied minors, disabled children, looked after children and those involved in gangs, or on the fringes of gangs, are at increased risk of sexual exploitation.

Child sexual exploitation can occur through the use of technology without the child’s immediate recognition. For example, being persuaded to post sexual images on the internet/mobile phones, without immediate payment or gain.

In all cases, those exploiting the child/young person have power over them by virtue of their age, gender, intellect, physical strength and/or economic or other resources. Violence, coercion, and intimidation are common. Involvement in exploitative relationships are in the main characterised by the child or young person’s limited availability of choice resulting from their social /economic and/or emotional vulnerability.

If you think a child/young person is at risk of sexual exploitation or is being sexually exploited you must make an immediate referral to Islington’s Children's Services Contact Team, 020 7527 7400,

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