The Fenestra serious case review into child sexual exploitation: identifying the strengths and gaps in the multi-agency responses to child sexual exploitation in order to learn and improve

Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) relating to a number of children over a 3 year period.

Key Findings

  • The child sexual exploitation (CSE) of Child C and Child Q by Perpetrators A and B between 2010 and 2014. Police Operation Fenestra led to their convictions for sexual offences against 6 children (including Child C and Child Q) in 2016. The type of CSE experienced by children C and Q fits the 'inappropriate relationship' model. Perpetrator A, who was much older than them, subjected them to physical, sexual and emotional abuse as part of a controlling relationship. There were three professional referrals to children's services in 2010 and three referrals from Child Q's father in the same year. In 2011 Child Q took an overdose and was hospitalised. She later disclosed she had been pregnant by perpetrator A and had had a miscarriage. In 2011 Child C went missing from home, was referred to CAMHS and had a termination of pregnancy. In 2012 Child C attempted suicide on several occasions and was admitted to a mental health in-patient unit. Both children C and Q gave birth to perpetrator A's children in 2012.
  • Findings include: professionals' difficulties in recognising 'inappropriate relationships'; not recognising parents' concerns; safeguarding risks for children in relation to piercing and tattoo salons. Uses the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) Learning Together methodology.
  • Uses 'considerations' for the LSCB as opposed to recommendations: are the police sufficiently resourced to support complex CSE investigations and take the lead in multi-agency working; is the LSCB satisfied with mental health services to support CSE victims; how can safeguarding be improved locally; do practitioners understand the need for persistence and curiosity when developing trusting relationships with children.

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