Support to End Exploitation (SEEN)
A public-private partnership that responds to child victims of sexual exploitation and young people at risk. 35 inter-agency partners work together to provide a tailored response with an approach which emphasises child development, recovery, treatment and justice.
Type of intervention
Individual work, group work, mentoring
Target groups, level of prevention and subgroups
- Children and Young People (Victims) | Primary prevention | Children (6-11 years), Young People (12-17 years) | Male and female | Individual work, group work, mentoring
- Children and Young People (Victims) | Secondary prevention | Children (6-11 years), Young People (12-17 years) | Male and female | Individual work, group work, mentoring | English
Young people from age 10-17 years who have been victims of commercial sexual exploitation or who are at risk.
The Support to End Exploitation Now (SEEN) Coalition, a partnership that implements a response to child victims of commercial sexual exploitation and young people who are at risk, in Suffolk County, USA.
Mode and context of delivery
SEEN is based in the Children's Advocacy Centre of Suffolk County USA, where a case coordinator arranges a multidisciplinary response to referrals involving risk of or actual commercial sexual exploitation of children and young people. 35 inter-agency partners work together to provide a coordinated and tailored response with an approach which emphasises child development, recovery, treatment and justice. Training and outreach services are also provided. Services are provided in the community. Leaflets and guides are provided on website.
Level/nature of staff expertise required
Knowledge and experience in work with abused and/or exploited young people, a thorough understanding of child abuse systems, processes and the juvenile justice system and strong interpersonal skills, are essential. No specific professional qualification is required by the coordinator.
Intensity/extent of engagement with target group(s)
The case coordinator communicates regularly with key people involved in individual cases in the professional network. Each young person typically has up to 10 people in the professional community involved in different aspects of their case. Work with individuals usually continues for one to two years. Initially coordination between those carrying out the work is on a daily basis and then reduces gradually over time depending on individual case.
Description of intervention
The goals of SEEN are to:
- Empower child/adolescent victims to leave their exploiter and utilise opportunities to regain control of their future
- Ensure the physical and psychological safety of exploited youth
- Ensure young people's access to resources and services
- Enforce offender accountability by apprehending and prosecuting adults who exploit them
SEEN is automatically notified by the child welfare and law enforcement agencies of suspected cases of commercial sexual exploitation. This identification and referral process is formalised by a memorandum of understanding. The Commercial Sexual Exploitation Response Model (see website www.suffolkcac.org/programs/seen) is based on intensive case coordination across an extensive multi-disciplinary network. Multi-agency team case conferences are held to address case history, needs and concerns, perpetrator lethality and risk and to formulate collaborative action plans. Parents and non-offending family members are included in the multidisciplinary team response as appropriate.
Commercial sexual exploitation specific support is provided based on individual needs and this includes group prevention education and individual mentorship. Cases generally remain active for one to two years depending on need. Intensive coordination of the multi-disciplinary team is a key feature of this model. Work is also undertaken with young people who are identified as being at high risk with a view to empowering them to take control of their lives.
SEEN conducts a two day training programme on child sexual exploitation and local outreach and education is also provided to raise awareness. The website www.suffolkcac.org/programs/seen includes leaflets about indicators of child sexual exploitation and a guide to responding to concerns.
The programme has been reviewed by the California Evidence-based Clearinghouse for Child Welfare see www.cebc4cw.org/program/support-to-end-exploitation-now-seen.
There are no published peer-reviewed studies or evaluations currently available.
Piening, S., & Cross, T. (2012). From “The Life” to my life: Sexually exploited children reclaiming their futures, Suffolk County Massachusetts’ response to commercial sexual exploitation of children (CSEC). Retrieved from http://www.suffolkcac.org/assets/pdf/From_the_Life_to_My_Life_ Suffolk_Countys_Response_to_CSEC_June_2012.pdf
Information correct at January 2021