Further training for South Yorkshire Police call handlers to spot signs of child sexual exploitation

An “innovative” training programme to help police officers and call handlers spot the signs of child sexual exploitation and neglect is being rolled out across South Yorkshire.

Tuesday, 14th December 2021, 12:32 pm

Councillor Rukhsana Haleem, a Labour councillor on Rotherham Council asked a meeting of the police and crime panel yesterday (December 13), if 101 call handlers in South Yorkshire are specially trained to spot cases of child sexual exploitation.

Kevin Wright, evaluation and scrutiny officer at the police and crime comissioner’s office told the meeting that there is additional training coming up “in the next few months”, which also includes call handlers.

Dr Billings added that the training, called Child Matters, is an “intensive day” for officers and call handlers.

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"It's already got national interest in it from forces across the country in terms of training around spotting the signs of exploitation and child neglect."

“The intensive approach is quite innovative and is being pioneered here in South Yorkshire,” added Dr Billings.

“It’s already got national interest in it from forces across the country in terms of training around spotting the signs of exploitation and child neglect.”

The Child Matters training is a collaboration between the NSPCC and South Yorkshire Police, which trains police officers and call handlers to identify and intervene in cases of child neglect.