A long way to go in tackling child sexual exploitation

02 April 2014

Responding to the publication of a Parliamentary inquiry into the effectiveness of child sexual exploitation law, chief executive, Matthew Reed, said:

'As a society, we’ve got a lot better at tackling child sexual exploitation since the Sexual Offences Act was introduced ten years ago. But as this report shows, there is still a long way to go.

'The uncomfortable truth is that sexual exploitation happens in every community and we’re likely to uncover more as we get better at tackling it.

Disrupt and prevent

'Changes to the law, such as making it easier for the police to stop adults who want to meet children to abuse them, will help disrupt exploitation. And more training for judges, police officers and lawyers will make it easier to prosecute offenders.

'But we also need to do more to prevent it happening in the first place. It is unacceptable if local agencies are not sharing information that would allow them to build up a picture of the risk to children in their area.

'And it is crucial that schools properly educate children about sex, relationships and consent, supporting them to stay safe.'

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Notes to editors

  • The Children’s Society wants to create a society where children and young people are valued, respected and happy. We are committed to helping vulnerable and disadvantaged young people, including children in care and young runaways. We give a voice to disabled children, help young refugees to rebuild their lives and provide relief for young carers. Through our campaigns and research, we seek to influence policy and perceptions so that young people have a better chance in life.
  • The inquiry – chaired by Sarah Champion MP and supported by Barnardos – will be published on Wednesday 2 April.