Thursday, 4 September 2008

Child Prostitution

One of the topics that students occasionally enquire about is the subject of child prostitution. Understandably, doing research about such a sensitive subject has certain difficulties attached, and some of the sites which you attempt to access may be blocked by whichever filtering software your computer is using. So today's post is intended to point students towards 'safe', reliable information on this topic.

A very good starting point are the websites of ECPAT UK and Ecpat, an organisation which is dedicated to eliminating the commercial sexual exploitation of children. It's also worth looking at the Child Trafficking reading list that the NSPCC has put together, which lists a range of relevant books, reports and web pages. A similar list with a more international outlook has been put together by the Child Right's Information Network, though be warned that not all the reports listed are written in English!

Back in the UK, the primary legislation which governs this area is the Sexual Offences Act 2003. The DCSF is currently carrying out a consultation on how best to help professionals identify children and young people who may be at risk from exploitation, but until that is completed students may want to look at Paying The Price, a Home Office consultation that was published in 2004. Finally, for suggestions for further books and journal articles in this area, try going to Social Care Online and searching for 'child prostitution'; you should have over 300 results to choose from.

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