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We know that when young people reach their adolescent years, they spend more and more time outside of the family home which can result in peer groups being more influential than family members.  Unfortunately, this can result in young people being at risk of exploitation, missing episodes, involvement in gangs and youth violence and being the victims of trafficking.  Traditional safeguarding approaches focus on whether a young person is at risk of harm posed within the home, or by the family and particularly looks at the capability and capacity of parents to keep them safe.  For many young people at risk of exploitation, family members are doing everything they can to protect their children, but the pull factors outside of the family home are just too strong. 

In an attempt to improve the response in Wolverhampton to young people at risk of exploitation, a significant amount of work has been undertaken to develop a whole system and whole partnership approach.

This has resulted in a number of changes to the local system which includes the introduction of:

  • New exploitation referral pathway. 
  • Local National Referral Mechanism (NRM) pathway. 
  • Review and extension of the role of our Child Exploitation and Missing Operational Group and Multi-Agency Child Exploitation meetings. 
  • Partnership Information Reports (PIR) must be completed where professionals have intelligence that can support in safeguarding individuals. PIR’s are not for reporting a crime and all crimes must be reported to the police on 101 or 999 in an emergency. 

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