People in Wolverhampton are being urged to unite against child sexual exploitation (CSE) and make a personal pledge to help tackle the abuse.

Councils across the West Midlands, including the City of Wolverhampton Council, along with West Midlands Police are supporting national Type=links;Linkid=3771;Title=CSE;Target=_blank; awareness day on Saturday (18 March, 2017).

Organised by the national charity NWG Network, which is dedicated to helping combat Type=links;Linkid=3771;Title=CSE;Target=_blank;, the day aims to encourage everyone to think, spot and speak out against abuse.

On the day people are asked to write a personal pledge on their hands and then post a photo of it on social media using #HelpingHands. The pledge can be anything from speaking out about CSE to educating others about the issue and what signs to look out for.

Wolverhampton, Dudley, Birmingham, Walsall, Sandwell, Solihull and Coventry councils along with the police and partner organisations are working together to raise the profile of CSE in the region through the Type=links;Linkid=3771;Title=See Me, Hear Me;Target=_blank; campaign.

It aims to increase people's understanding of Type=links;Linkid=3771;Title=child sexual exploitation;Target=_blank; and how to spot the warning signs in a child or young person's behaviour which may indicate that something is wrong. 

Councillor Val Gibson, the City of Wolverhampton Council's Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, said: "This national day is an opportunity for us to further increase awareness of CSE and how people can spot the warning signs.

"We'd like as many people as possible to get involved, so please make a personal pledge, post a photo on social media and then act on what you've decided to do.

"We all have our part to play in stopping this horrendous abuse. The more aware we are of the signs, the greater chance we have to stop the abuse and protect our young people."

Warning signs of Type=links;Linkid=3771;Title=CSE;Target=_blank; include having friends who are older, persistently going missing, secretive relationships with unknown adults, truancy from school, chronic fatigue, constant calls on a mobile phone and the possession of money or new things.

Anyone who is concerned about the safety of a young person should call West Midlands Police on 101, speak in confidence to Crimestoppers on 0800 555111 or in an emergency call 999. Childline also have counsellors available online at Type=links;Linkid=3772;Title=Childline;Target=_blank;.

  • released: Tuesday 14 March, 2017