Police officer speaking to two children in a park


An introduction to child sexual abuse – for policing professionals

A half-day course providing policing professionals with the critical key messages to confidently recognise and effectively respond to child sexual abuse


6 to 25




Online / in-person


£850 / £34pp plus VAT

The CSA Centre estimates that over 500,000 children are sexually abused every year in England and Wales, but only a small fraction come to the attention of statutory authorities.

Police professionals play a pivotal role in tackling child sexual abuse and supporting victims, families and survivors, but evidence shows that police officers receive minimal dedicated training on child sexual abuse. Such training is often delivered as part of broader inputs on children protection, and in the context of emotional abuse and neglect.

An introduction to child sexual abuse – for policing professionals is a half-day course providing professionals with an introduction and overview of child sexual abuse. It addresses the critical key messages that frontline officers need to understand to enable them to confidently recognise and effectively deal, in the first instance, with concerns of child sexual abuse.

Who is this course for?

This course is for all policing professionals working with children, young people and/or their parents and carers. This includes frontline roles such as police officers, as well as civilian staff, and is suitable for policing professionals with any degree of specialism including new recruits, those with long service, and those assigned to specialist units.

Who will run the course?

The course will be led by an experienced policing professional with background in working on public protection cases.

What can you expect to gain?

When surveyed, 90% of professionals in our police training pilots said they would use what they had learned in in their professional role.

Following the course, you can expect to have a better understanding of:

  • The scale and nature of child sexual abuse, and why it is so important for police officers to have both knowledge of child sexual abuse and the confidence to apply professional curiosity to every situation they attend.
  • How children communicate their experiences of sexual abuse, and the police role in helping them do this.
  • Medical examinations for children – what happens at a sexual assault referral centre (SARC), and the purposes and benefits of a medical examination over and above the opportunity it presents to obtain forensic evidence.
  • The potential signs and indicators of sexual abuse and sexually abusive behaviour – an opportunity for officers to understand how they can contribute to the police investigation of child sexual abuse.
  • Priorities around investigation and safeguarding when you have concerns about child sexual abuse.

I thought the session on how to talk to children who are victims of child sexual abuse was excellent – it would have empowered officers to talk to children.


Police Sergeant