Hotels in Chesterfield tested on awareness of Child Sexual Exploitation
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Officers have been testing hotels in the Chesterfield area on the warning signs of child sexual exploitation (CSE).
Eighteen hotels were visited during an operation in December to see if they would challenge people attempting to book rooms to carry out possible CSE offences.
CSE is a form of child abuse in which victims are manipulated or forced into taking part in sexual activity, often in return for attention, affection, money, drugs, alcohol or accommodation. It can also involve violence, coercion and intimidation, with threats of physical harm or humiliation.
Our North Division Licensing Team set up the operation where plain-clothed officers and young police cadets visited the venues together and tried to book a room in the hope that reception staff would recognise the signs, refuse to rent out the room and contact the police.
Two out of the 18 hotels followed the correct procedure and responded appropriately.
Sgt. Mat Winterbottom, of the team, said: “Although the result was disappointing, we now have the opportunity to further improve education and training around what hotel staff should look out for, and hopefully give them the confidence to follow their instincts, challenge and report suspicions to the police.
“This operation was not about catching people out but to encourage awareness and help local venues to better learn how to protect and safeguard young people who may be vulnerable and at risk of Child Sexual Exploitation.”
Future operations and checks are being planned in the area.
If you suspect a person of carrying out child sexual exploitation, or think someone you know has been a victim, or may be soon, please report the concerns in any of the following ways:
Call our non-emergency, 24/7 number: 101. If you're deaf or hard of hearing, use our textphone service on 18001 101.
Visit a police station to speak to an officer in person.
Contact the NSPCCto speak to a professional practitioner
Contact the children's social care team at your local council.
Contact Crimestoppers online, or by calling 0800 555 111, confidentially and anonymously.
If you’re a child, you could also speak to someone you trust, like a friend, a teacher or another adult.
If you’re a professional working with children, remember you have a responsibility to refer your concerns to Children’s Social Care through your local council.
If someone is in immediate danger of harm, please call 999 now. If you're deaf or hard of hearing, use our textphone service 18000 or text us on 999 if you’ve pre-registered with the emergencySMS service.