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Social care role in identifying, preventing and responding to all children and young people at risk of sexual exploitation in relation to a child not currently receiving a social work service

When a parent, professional, or another person contacts ART with concerns that a child is being sexually exploited, children’s social care will complete a SERAF and decide on the course of action within 24 hours. (Unless a practitioner involved has recently completed a SERAF.) This will normally follow discussion with any referring professional or service, and involve other professionals and services as necessary, including the police as a criminal offence may have been committed against a child.

This initial consideration of the child’s needs and circumstances should address, on the basis of the available evidence, whether there are concerns about impairment to the child’s health and development (including actual and/or potential harm) which justifies further enquiries, assessment and/or intervention. If further action is needed, a decision is required on when enquiries and/or intervention should begin and how best to undertake them.