I am pleased to present the second annual report from the National Child Sexual Exploitation ( CSE) Group. This report details the progress made since the update of the National Action Plan to Prevent and Tackle Child Sexual Exploitation published in 2016 and builds upon the work highlighted in our first annual report. The work of the National CSE Group sits within the wider Child Protection Improvement Programme ( CPIP).
There has been significant activity and progress in relation to a number of actions contained in the national plan, and I am pleased with the progress that has been made. Some key pieces of work have been completed and are highlighted within this report and I am confident that progress will be maintained during the coming year.
Since the publication of the national action plan in 2016, there have been developments at both national and local level that will support and contribute to Scotland's response to tackle child sexual exploitation in Scotland, and it is important that we recognise these in the report. This includes the announcement of the Child Protection Improvement Programme, under which action to tackle CSE is being taken forward and developments to improve data and evidence on child sexual abuse. National groups have also been established to improve our response to those who have experienced sexual assault and prevent sexual offending by children and young people.
Preventing and tackling CSE requires a coordinated, multi-agency response and the actions contained in the plan reflect this. Membership of the National CSE Group has been revised to ensure robust representation and rigorous oversight.
I want to personally thank all those involved with taking forward the actions, along with all members of the National CSE Group. Your actions have significantly contributed to progressing the vision of the National Action Plan. By working together and progressing the activities, we can all contribute to improving outcomes for children and young people whose lives have been affected by CSE and achieve Scotland's vision of:
……a place where sexual exploitation of children and young people is eliminated – a Scotland where children and young people are protected from harm and, in a society that is a hostile place for perpetrators and facilitators of child sexual exploitation
Chair National CSE Group