CUMBRIA Police are hosting a multi-agency webchat about child sexual exploitation (CSE) this Wednesday.
The webchat will be taking place between 6.30pm and 8pm and will feature representatives from Cumbria Constabulary, Children’s Services, Inspira, NSPCC, and the NHS.
DI Nick Coughlan for the Public Protection Unit at Cumbria Constabulary explains: “The webchat is a perfect opportunity for the general public to ask any questions they may have around CSE.
"A number of agencies will be available to share their expertise. It is an ideal way to get in touch if you believe a young person you know is at risk and you want to find out more about how to help them.
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“I would also encourage any young people who think they may be a victim of abuse to join the webchat and ask any questions they may have.
“CSE often involves offenders grooming youngsters and using their power to sexually abuse them.
"It can take many forms, whether it occurs through a seemingly 'consensual' relationship with an older boyfriend, or a young person having sex in return for attention, gifts, alcohol or cigarettes.
“Sexual exploitation is child abuse and, although they may not realise it, it puts the young victim at huge risk of damage to their physical, emotional and psychological health.”
You can access the webchat here: http://www.cumbria.police.uk/contact-us/web-chats/cse-webchat.
Anyone with concerns about child sexual exploitation can contact Cumbria Police on 101, or the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
Young victims can report anonymously at: www.fearless.org
For more information on CSE visit the Cumbria Police website at www.cumbria.police.uk/cse.