A child is sexually abused when they are forced or persuaded to take part in sexual activities. This doesn't have to be physical contact and it can happen online. Sometimes the child won't understand that what's happening to them is abuse. They may not even understand that it's wrong.
Sexual abuse and sexual assault can have a devastating and long-term impact on a child and young personís physical and mental health and well-being. It may be very difficult for a child or young person to talk about what is happening to them and they may not know how to.
Professionals who suspect or have identified that a child is being sexually abused or has been sexually assaulted should use the Cumbria Local Safeguarding Children Board Procedures Manual.
You can also use this flowchart to identify which organisation to contact in the first instance.