Child Exploitation and Children Missing from Home or Care

Working Together 2018 highlights threats that children may face from outside their families that may make them vulnerable to abuse or exploitation. These extra-familial threats might arise at school and other educational establishments, from within peer groups, or more widely from within the wider community and/or online. They can take a variety of different forms and children can be vulnerable to multiple threats, including: exploitation by criminal gangs and organised crime groups such as county lines, trafficking, online abuse and sexual exploitation.

The following pages provide information and resources aimed at supporting practitioners who are working with children and young people who may be at risk of exploitation.

The LSCP Risk and Vulnerabilities Strategy focuses on the following strands of exploitation and risk, recognising that individual children may be vulnerable to a range of risks and exploitation and that children who go missing from home and care are at increased risk of being exploited.


Child Exploitation Risk Identification Tool and practice guidance

This is a tool that you can use to help you decide whether a child or young person may be at risk of child sexual exploitation (CSE), child criminal exploitation (CCE) or more than one form of child exploitation (CE).
This tool will help you to make an initial judgement about the level of risk of exploitation for the child or young person and what actions are required. The tool is to help you identify the risk of exploitation and to assist in follow on planning, it is not a referral form.

When making a referral to the Children’s Service Duty and Advice team or sharing your concerns with the child’s allocated social worker, the tool should form the basis of those discussions.

Refer to the table at the end of the tool to help you decide how to proceed and discuss this with your manager.

Child exploitation is never the victim’s fault, even if there is some form of exchange: all children and young people under the age of 18 have a right to be safe and should be protected from harm.

Multi-agency Child Exploitation Framework (MACE)

The Multi-agency Child Exploitation (MACE) Framework describes Leeds’ arrangements when responding to the challenge of children vulnerable to exploitation, including: child sexual and criminal exploitation, children who go missing and other forms of abuse such as modern slavery and trafficking.

The MACE Framework promotes a multi-agency approach that responds to the government’s objectives as outlined in ‘Tackling Child Sexual Exploitation’ Progress Report February 2017 which are: tackling offenders, reducing vulnerability and supporting victims and survivors.

One Minute Guide