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Child Trafficking Awareness Week 2nd - 6th July

In line with national law enforcement activity planned for 2nd- 6th July 2018, Barnardo's West Midlands Panel for the Protection of Trafficked Children (PPTC) and our partners, want YOU to increase your understanding and awareness of Child Trafficking.

Children are being trafficked into, within and out of the West Midlands and we need your eyes and ears to stop it. At least 74 children within West Midlands were identified as potential victims of child trafficking between January and March 2018.

Child Trafficking is defined as the movement of a child for the purpose of exploitation. This movement could be across country borders, across the UK or even within the same local area or street. Children from any country, culture or religion, and both boys and girls, can be victims of trafficking and exploitation. Victims of Child Sexual Exploitation and Child Criminal Exploitation through County Lines, and Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children should always be considered as potentially trafficked children.

Take ACTION to spot the indicators of Child Trafficking: 


  • Are they dishevelled?
  • Are they wearing clothes/ attire which they could not afford to buy?
  • Are they wearing clothes/ attire which suggests gang allegiance?
  • Are they wearing clothing which concerns you – inappropriate for weather/age?
  • Signs of abuse?
  • Lack of eye contact?
  • Context
    • Do they seem out of context?
    • Is there evidence that they have been moved around –within UK and/or abroad?
    • Are they in an area or circumstances where you would not expect to find a child?
    • Do they have missing episodes/ are they a missing child?
    • Are there signs of gang allegiance/ belonging to a gang or group?
    • Talking
      • Is someone controlling what they say or speaking for them?
      • Are they refusing or reluctant to talk?
      • Are they fearful of authority? Or aggressive toward authority?
      • What is their body language saying?
      • Identity
        • Can they prove their identity?
        • Is there something suspicious about their identity?
        • Who are they travelling with and are they credible?
        • Are they alone?
        • Are they from a different country?
        • Oppressed
          • Do they act sub-servient to someone/ you?
          • Is their behaviour unusual for their age?
          • Are they being controlled/ groomed/ acting under duress or force?
          • Narrative
            • Is their story credible?
            • Does their story seem rehearsed/ familiar?
            • Are they referencing people/ places/ situations which may indicate exploitation?

            • If you are concerned that a child may be the victim of child trafficking:
            • Where possible, ensure they are in a safe place
            • Follow your organisation's safeguarding procedures
            • Refer to MASH (detail of how can be found on Local Safeguarding Children's Board websites)
            • Contact West Midlands Police by calling 101 and clearly state that you are concerned about a potential victim of child trafficking/ modern slavery. Always call Police on 999 if you or someone else is in immediate danger.
            • Contact Barnardo's National Counter Trafficking Support Line to make a referral to the Panel for the Protection of Trafficked Children for a specialist worker be assigned within 72 hours to give advice / support with safety planning/ help with NRM completion  -0800 043 4303

            • National Referral Mechanism (NRM)
    • NRM is a framework for identification and supporting potential victims of trafficking. Anyone suspected to be a victim of trafficking (within the UK or to/from another country) should be referred through NRM for a formal decision to be made by a Competent Authority, about whether they are deemed to be a victim of human trafficking. Adults need to give consent for this referral, however consent is not required for children. Only certain organisations can refer into NRM, these are referred to as First Responders and include Local Authority Children's Services, Police and Barnardo's. 
    • More information about NRM, and the NRM form can be found here: http://www.nationalcrimeagency.gov.uk/about-us/what-we-do/specialist-capabilities/uk-human-trafficking-centre/national-referral-mechanism
Information Sharing Guidance 2018
Working Together 2018 - updated guidance

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