VIDEO: Focus on Child Sexual Exploitation.
Keeping vulnerable young people safe remains a top priority for myself, the police and other partners. Since taking office I have ensured more resources have gone into protecting vulnerable people and more training has taken place, as outlined in this video
I have reinforced victim services to ensure specialist support is now available to all victims of sexual violence. Those victims are actively encouraged to come forward to seek support and justice. New projects to prevent these crimes ever happening are now in place, working with community partners including schools to identify vulnerable children and keep them safe.
There is no denial that this horrific crime is happening in our communities now and has been for many years. That acknowledgement, along with recent improvements, means more cases are now being reported, more victims are getting help, more criminals are being caught, and more children are being protected. That progress needs to be sustained and improved further.
A national review of child sexual exploitation is being carried out and we await its findings. In the meantime, I would stress that these crimes are not limited to any one part of our society. This is an issue for communities to acknowledge, understand and tackle nationwide. As a society, we must unite against criminals, not our own communities.