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Child Exploitation Fears

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9:54am 16th October 2014

The number of children at risk of sexual exploitation in Cornwall is revealed.

31 cases have been referred to Cornwall Council since January this year.

These include:

1. Missing and/or suspicion of association with other young persons/adults where there are concerns

2. Suspicion or allegation of coercion/sexual favours within a relationship in return for 'gifts' including alcohol/drugs

3. Suspicion, allegation or evidence of online/face to face grooming

4. Suspicion, allegation or evidence of a young person meeting a person believed to be grooming

5. Suspicion, allegation or evidence of sexual activity/assault arising from 1, 2, 3 or 4.

It mainly involved both boys and girls age 13 to 19.

Sally Piper runs Truro based sexual abuse charity Skoodya, she said: "Because the youngsters are struggling themselves, if an adult who isn't their parent then shows them some attention, offers them drugs, offers them drink they will then be sucked in and that grooming process can begin, and they are often persuaded that they are in love with that person.

"The impact it is has on children is they may well end up with very serious mental health issues, certainly emotional damage, and they may well go onto be drug addicts or addicted to alcohol because of the exploitation that has occurred to them."

9:54am 16th October 2014

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