CSE is a crime that can affect any child, anytime, anywhere


Child sexual exploitation (CSE) is a crime that can affect any child, anytime, anywhere regardless of their social or ethnic background.

Sexual exploitation puts a young person at huge risk of damage to their physical, emotional and psychological health.  Child sexual exploitation does not always involve physical contact; it can also occur through the use of technology.

CSE involves young people and children being ‘groomed’ and sexually exploited.  It can take many forms, such as through an apparently ‘consensual’ relationship with an older person or a young person having sex in return for attention, gifts, cigarettes or alcohol.

Many young people who are being exploited do not realise they are at risk and will not ask for help. Some may see themselves as willing participants in such abuse, thinking that they are in a relationship with their abuser and not realising that what is happening to them is illegal.


If you or someone you know is at immediate risk

call 999 now

For general concerns about your own, or somebody else’s, safety contact: 

Devon Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH)

0345 155 1071



The Devon Approach

Agencies in Devon work with partners across Devon, Torbay, Plymouth and Cornwall to improve our response to CSE, we have a commitment from all agencies to work together in support of young people, whether they are vulnerable to CSE or have been victims of CSE. Across the peninsula all agencies are working to raise awareness to ensure that everyone has an understanding of CSE and is able to spot the signs and take action.

The Devon Children & Families Partnership and the Torbay Safeguarding Children Board have responsibility for coordinating and scrutinising the effectiveness of services being delivered to children and young people across Devon and Torbay.

Devon & Cornwall Police will investigate any report of a child being abused or sexually exploited and they work with partner agencies to provide support and safety for any young person at risk. They have specialist officers to investigate child abuse and sexual offences and support children through the criminal justice process.


Devon & Cornwall Police

Emergency telephone: 999
Non-emergency telephone: 101*
Email: 101@dc.police.uk
Online: www.dc.police.uk/reportcrime

Deaf/hard of hearing or speech impaired
Emergency SMS/Text: 999 To register your mobile for the Emergency text 999 service please follow this link Emergency SMS
Minicom/textphone number: 18000

Non-emergency SMS/Text: 67101
Minicom/textphone number: 18001

Devon Children and Families Partnership

If you are worried about a child or young person in Devon please contact the Devon Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub. Try to give as much information as you can.

Telephone: 0345 155 1071
Out of Hours: 0845 6000 388
Email: mashsecure@devon.gcsx.gov.uk
Website: devonchildrenandfamiliespartnership.org.uk

Torbay Safeguarding Children Board

If you are worried about a child or young person in Torbay please contact the Torbay Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub. Try to give as much information as you can.

Telephone: 01803 208100
Out of Hours: 0300 4564 876
Email: torbay.safeguardinghub@torbay.gcsx.gov.uk
Website: torbaysafeguarding.org.uk 

'Say Something' Helpline

Provides help and advice for young people around sexual exploitation. Phone or text the free number for immediate support 24/7.

Phone or Text: 116 000
Website: faceup2it.org


A free, private and confidential service for anyone under 19. Whatever your worry, whenever you need help, however you want to get in touch. Email, chat online or phone, any time, day or night.

Telephone: 0800 1111

Website: childline.org.uk

You can view and download campaign materials on child sexual exploitation here.