The Coalition for the Removal of Pimping (Crop) has produced a list of signs that may indicate the sexual exploitation of your child.
Coalition for the Removal of Pimping helpline: 0113 240 3040
This is derived from their experience of supporting families where children, mostly girls are subjected to sexual exploitation.
It may be difficult for parents and carers to differentiate between ordinary teenage rebellion and risk of sexual exploitation among adolescents. But the following list is a good indicator:
Being secretive or withdrawn
Hostility towards parents/carers and family members
Associating with older men or with children known to have been groomed
Developing a relationship of a sexual nature with an older man or woman
New possessions not given by parents/carers such as mobile phone, trainers, jewellery
Starts being defensive about the activities she may be involved in
Appears drunk or under the influence of drugs
Starts truanting or is excluded from school
Looks ill, tired and sleeps through the day (at home or at school)
Increase in health related problems
Stays out at nights or does not return home during the day
Returns home after long intervals but appears to be well cared for
Change in performance at school in a short time
Starts using street language
Considerable change in physical appearance - clothes, make-up
Involved in petty crime such as shop lifting, stealing
Detached from age appropriate activities or activities she had always enjoyed
Isolated from her normal friends/peer group
Volatile behaviour exhibiting an extreme array of mood swings
Becomes disruptive or uses abusive language at home/school
Physical aggression towards parents, siblings, pets, teachers or friends
Phone ringing constantly or someone sending SMS messages.
Marks/scars on her body which she tries to conceal
Exhibits self-harming behaviour or suicidal tendencies
Pregnant or suffers from sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
Has street name and gets phone calls from strangers addressing her with a different name
While this deals primarily with the sexual exploitation of girls, it is not to say that boys are not at risk too.
There is an increasing body of knowledge of sexual exploitation of boys and young men around the country. Perpetrators of sexual exploitation are predominantly men, but can also be women.
Teenage Sex For Sale: Panorama BBC One 10.35pm on Thursday 27 March 2008.
If you have been affected by the issues raised, you can call the Coalition for the Removal of Pimping helpline on 0113 240 3040.