The Safeguarding Partnership Board (SPB) recently held a successful networking and engagement event for professionals to raise awareness and start the conversation around Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation (CSAE).
The event had around 50 attendees both in person and online, from partner agencies including the States of Jersey Police, Children’s Social Care, Mind Jersey, NSPCC, the Youth Service, Sexual Health Team and Education. It prompted a number of thought-provoking questions that demonstrated the appetite for change amongst Islanders and focused on three main priority areas of the CSAE strategy:
- Priority one – Prevention and identification of CSAE. To reduce the prevalence of CSAE and to make Jersey a safe space for children and young people to grow up.
- Priority two – Child friendly investigation of CSAE. To improve children and young people’s experience of the criminal justice process and to improve diversion and prosecution rates.
- Priority three – Enabling recovery from CSAE. To minimise the long-term impact of CSAE on children as they grow up into adults.
The strategy aims to reduce the long-term impact of CSAE on children, young people and families living in Jersey. Our vision is for children and young people in Jersey to live free from sexual abuse and exploitation.
Following the event, a CSAE steering group of partner agencies across the Island has been set-up to begin a public awareness campaign, which will help islanders spot the signs of CSAE, understand how to report it and where to go for support, and to raise the profile of services. This will include engaging with children and young people, workshops with parents, and further professional learning events.
Pat Marius, Chair of the CSAE subgroup and Designated Nurse and Safeguarding Children and Adults, Health and Community Services, said:
“The Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Strategy has been developed with children and young people’s views at the forefront. The event provided an opportunity for our colleagues to join us, start conversations and hear about the fantastic work being already done. Our conversations will be kept alive and continue to break the silence around CSAE, and ensure the safety of children and young people is our primary focus within the home and community.”
Vicki Larbalestier, Team Manager for NSPCC Jersey, said:
“We were delighted to be part of this event and share with colleagues the progress which has been made over the last year, thanks to the Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation Strategy. As a member of the Jersey Safeguarding Partnership Board, NSPCC Jersey is committed to working with partners to achieve the strategy’s vision for children and young people on the Island to live free from sexual abuse and exploitation. The Island is already seeing the benefits of having this strategy and working in partnership, but we all recognise that more still needs to be done.”