A day of awareness about child sexual exploitation (CSE) is being held for people who work closely with children and young people.

Organised by the Nottingham City and Nottinghamshire County Safeguarding Children Boards, the CSE Showcase event on Wednesday 8 March 2017 will be attended by 100 frontline workers from the voluntary and statutory services who come into contact with young people at risk of sexual exploitation.

CSE is a type of sexual abuse in which the victim is given something (food, money, drugs, alcohol or gifts) in exchange for sexual activity with one or more abusers. CSE can affect any child under the age of 18; boys or girls, regardless of their social or ethnic background. CSE often involves abuse over a long period, often within a type of abusive relationship in which organised sexual abuse may take place involving one or more abuser. The abuse and the relationship can be online or physical.

CSE is an under-reported crime and the aim of the campaign is to open people’s eyes to what CSE is and to make sure that as many of Nottingham’s and the county’s communities are aware of the possible signs and how to report it.

The free Showcase event is at Nottingham Girls’ High School and will include presentations from the NSPCC, Nottinghamshire Police and U-create.

Councillor David Mellen, Portfolio Holder for Early Intervention and Early Years at the City Council and Nottinghamshire County Council’s lead for children’s social care, Councillor Kate Foale, said: “Keeping our children safe is a high priority for our councils and we are proud to be working with our partners across the city and county to raise awareness of CSE and tell local people what the signs of abuse look like and report abuse if they see it.

“We are committed to working with front line colleagues in health, schools and youth groups as well as local taxi drivers, security firms and hoteliers across Nottingham and the county to make sure that everybody’s eyes are open to CSE. We want to spread the message that everyone needs to be a part of this work to help raise awareness, do what they can to spot the signs of CSE and report them immediately.”

Detective Chief Inspector Pete Quinn, from Nottinghamshire Police Public Protection, said: “The Showcase event is an important way of raising awareness about CSE with professionals who have contact with children and young people. It’s vital that we make sure everyone understands the issues and the risks to young people.

“By co-ordinating our efforts, the Showcase allows us to bring together professionals from different organisations – and across city and county boundaries – to share experience and good practice around CSE. This also allows us to identify emerging risks to young people.”

The Showcase event is ahead of the national CSE Awareness Day on 18 March 2017, when organisations will be raising public awareness of child sexual exploitation. Co-ordinated by national charity NWG Network, CSE Awareness Day aims to highlight the issues surrounding child sexual exploitation; encouraging everyone to think, spot and speak out against abuse and adopt a zero tolerance to adults developing inappropriate relationships with children.

For more information on child sexual exploitation and who to contact if you have any concerns that a young person you know may be a victim of child sexual exploitation visit https://www.stop-cse.org/

Who do I call if I want to report a child at risk?

  • If you believe that a child is at immediate risk call the Police on 999 immediately.
  • If you feel the child is at risk but not in immediate need of protection, call the Police on 101.
  • To report suspected exploitation anonymously you can call Crime Stoppers on 0800 555 111.
  • If you make the decision to contact Children’s Social Care, and the child or young person lives in Nottingham city, please call 0115 876 4800. If they live outside the city boundary, please call 0300 500 80 80
  • If you do not feel comfortable speaking to the Police or Social Care you can phone the Free NSPCC Confidential Helpline on 0808 800 5000.

You can also report it to Nottinghamshire Police by calling 101 or call Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. If someone is in immediate danger, dial 999.

Confidential support and advice to children and young people is also available through Childline on 0800 1111.