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Child sexual exploitation

All children and young people should be kept safe and protected from abuse, neglect, harm and exploitation.

This is a right enshrined in legislation and all adults have a part to play in preventing children and young people from experiencing such harm.

As part of our Protecting Children work here at CELCIS, we contribute to Scotland’s National Action Plan to Prevent and Tackle Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) and we support the National CSE Group.

Here you’ll find information and resources to help protect children, wherever you are in Scotland.

What is child sexual exploitation?

CSE is a form of child sexual abuse involving someone in a position of power forcing or enticing a young person under the age of 18 to take part in sexual activity in return for something – this could be money, gifts, accommodation, affection or status.

Like other forms of abuse, a child or young person could be unaware of what’s happening. Regardless of any of notion of consent, it is child sexual abuse.

Sexual exploitation can take place in many different ways. It could be in person, online or a combination of both and can include children who are trafficked from within the UK or abroad.

CSE has a devastating and long lasting effect on children and young people. It often leads to a range of physical, mental and emotional health and wellbeing issues throughout their lives.

How you can help

We all have a part to play in preventing CSE. You can help by knowing what to look out for and by sharing your concerns about a child or young person. If you’re worried about a child or young person, please share your concerns.

We want to hear from you

If you have information and resources you’d like to share here, please email

Child sexual exploitation resources


Useful organisations

Contact us

University of Strathclyde, Curran Building, Level 6
94 Cathedral St, Glasgow G4 0LG
0141 444 8500

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