The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Runaway and Missing Children and Adults and the APPG for Looked after Children and Care Leavers has taken oral evidence from witnesses as part of its inquiry into the care and support provided for the thousands of children who go missing from care every year.
Children who go missing from care are in great danger of being physically or sexually abused. Research from The Children’s Society reveals that a quarter of the 100,000 children who run away from care or home each year have been the victims of significant harm or abuse.
The opening session, led by Ann Coffey MP, focuses on trafficked children who are disappearing from local authority care.
Children as young as three are trafficked in the UK for purposes of exploitation. This can include forced labour such as cannabis cultivation and domestic servitude, as well as forced begging, forced marriage and sexual exploitation.
Frontline practitioners are very concerned by the numbers of child victims of trafficking going missing from care and never being found.