Child sexual exploitation

A form of child abuse

Child sexual exploitation (CSE) is a form of child abuse where a young person under the age of 18 is encouraged, trapped, forced or coerced into a sexual relationship or situation by an adult.

It often involves the young person being offered something, such as alcohol, cigarettes, gifts, money, drugs or affection, in return for performing sexual acts with one or more adults.

Young people may feel they must have sex because an adult gives them something, or because they feel threatened or frightened.

Speak out

If something bad is happening to you:

  • speak out
  • shout loud
  • tell a safe adult – one that you can trust
  • don't be alone – there are good people out there who will help you

Please don't suffer in silence – you are not alone.

There are lots of people who can give you support – see our help and advice for young people, and find out how we will help you.

Help and advice for parents and adults is available. We also provide advice for:

Find out the facts behind the myths about child sexual exploitation.