Past Events

Safeguarding Vulnerable Teenagers from Exploitation and Harm: Delivering System-Wide Change after the Pandemic

Date:     Wednesday 11th May 2022

Time:     10:00am - 3:00pm

Venue:  ONLINE Live Webinar

  • Event Abstract
  • Programme
  • Key Speakers
  • Who Should Attend?
  • Marketing Opportunities

The coronavirus pandemic and current cost of living crisis have directly contributed to one of the most challenging times faced by vulnerable children and young people in recent history. In the year 2019/2020, The Office of the Children’s Commissioner identified 14,700 children’s social care assessments, which included concerns about County Lines gang involvement, a 124% increase from 2019. This rise is mirrored by an increase in knife crime across the country, with London alone seeing its worst-ever annual death toll from teenage homicides in 2021. These statistics, however, only illustrate part of the challenges faced by existing child protection structures. There are thousands more young people who are experiencing greater exposure to domestic abuse, addiction, parental mental ill-health and poverty. Education, CAMHS and care systems have struggled to cope with not only the demand for services but also to properly identify and address the complex, changing and intersecting vulnerabilities suffered by teenagers at risk, leaving too many falling through the gaps and unable to access the help that they so desperately need.

To address this serious and growing challenge, the Government announced the launch of The Independent Review of Children’s Social Care to develop a series of recommendations that will form a new approach to child protection that meets the scale and complexity of current need. Additionally, the Government has allocated £200m for the Youth Endowment Fund over the next ten years to prevent teenagers from becoming involved in violence. Whilst these initiatives are a positive move forward, they are not enough to bring about the systemic change that is needed to prioritise and safeguard vulnerable young people, improve multi-agency working and protect them from exclusion, violence and sexual/criminal exploitation.

This Policy Foresight live webinar offers a timely opportunity for key partners from education, social care, local authorities, police, youth offending, criminal justice, health, housing, third sector and other key statutory agencies to explore how to address the gaps exposed by the pandemic in existing early intervention frameworks, multi-agency working and violence reduction strategies. The webinar provides an ideal platform for participants to hear from experts and policymakers, learn from innovative best practice and share ideas with fellow participants to deliver lasting change that protects vulnerable teenagers from harm.

Why Attend?

  • Live webinar featuring presentations and panel discussions with a wide range of policymakers, experts and key officials
  • Interactive Question Time sessions with opportunities to engage with all speakers
  • Identify gaps and explore solutions in early intervention strategies, local and national partnership working arrangements and youth violence reduction programmes
  • Learn best practice from experts working to protect vulnerable teenagers from criminal exploitation and county lines gangs
  • Gather knowledge to enhance existing frameworks, procedures, processes and toolkits
  • Share ideas with fellow participants from education, social care, local authorities, police, youth offending, criminal justice, health, housing, third sector and other key statutory agencies
  • On Demand – Exclusive access to speaker presentations and post-event resources

  • Resource - The Independent Review of Children’s Social Care in England

    Resource - The Children's Society Report: Youth Voice on School Exclusions (2021)

    Resource - The Children's Society Look Closer Campaign


    Delegate Online Login


    Introduction by Webinar Organiser


    Chair's Welcome and Opening Remarks


    Morning Keynote Session: Delivering Systemic Change in Child Protection and Care Structures

  • Exploring the current national picture and understanding the key factors for the recent increase of teenagers in child protection and care
  • Driving system-wide change – Improving child protection strategies and care structures for vulnerable young people
  • Ending the postcode lottery – Identifying and addressing the gaps in service provision

  • 10:30am

    Morning Keynote Session: Questions and Discussion


    Comfort Break


    Panel Session One:

    Embedding Proactive Early Intervention at the Heart of Child Protection

  • Raising awareness – Upskilling staff and parents to be able to identify and intervene earlier
  • Implementing a Trauma-Informed Approach – Designing effective safeguarding strategies that take into account the existing vulnerabilities including adverse childhood experiences (ACES)
  • Embedding culturally competent support into early intervention programmes to support young people and families
  • Building relationships – Actively engaging parents and providing them with targeted support
  • Preventing at-risk pupils from being permanently excluded – Exploring new strategies to keep in young people in schools

  • 11:40am

    Panel Session One: Questions and Discussion


    Comfort Break


    Panel Session Two:

    Improving the Protection of Young People through a Joined-Up Approach

  • Understanding the local picture of need – Enhancing data-sharing and partnership working between local authorities, social care, education, the police, health and the third sector
  • Protecting young people from extra-familial harm – Implementing a Contextual Safeguarding Approach
  • Utilising Violence Reduction Units (VRUs) – Tackling criminal exploitation and youth violence through a ‘Public Health Approach
  • Implementing a coordinated response to meet the needs of vulnerable teenagers in every area

  • 12:55pm

    Panel Session Two: Questions and Discussion


    Afternoon Keynote Session: Protecting Vulnerable Teenagers from Exploitation


    Afternoon Keynote Session: Questions and Discussion


    Comfort Break


    Panel Session Three:

    Delivering Lasting Protection for Young People at Risk

  • Ensuring the safety and security of vulnerable young people in care placements – Eliminating poor-quality and dangerous provision, including the use of unregulated accommodation
  • Effectively utilising current legislation and legal frameworks including the National Referral Mechanism (NRM) to safeguard young people from criminal exploitation
  • Breaking the link between being in care or on the edge of care, and exploitation and criminalisation
  • Ending the Cliff Edge – Using transitional safeguarding to ensure vulnerable teenagers are protected beyond the age of 18
  • Achieving better outcomes – Delivering interventions that permanently safeguard young people from harm

  • 2:40pm

    Panel Session Three: Questions and Discussion


    Final Questions and Chair's Summary & Closing Comments


    End of Online Seminar

    *Please note the programme and timings are subject to slight alteration without notice


    Duncan Evans, NPCC County Lines Lead for Child Exploitation, National County Lines Coordination Centre

    NPCCMerseyside Police

    DCC Ian Critchley, NPCC Lead for Child Protection, Merseyside Police

    Detective Superintendent Andy O’Connor, County Lines Lead, Merseyside Police

    St Giles Trust

    Junior Smart OBE, Founder and Gangs/CCE Lead, SOS Gangs Project; St Giles Trust

    Children’s Society

    Lucy Belcher, North Service Manager, Prevention Programme, The Children’s Society


    Jon Brown, Director of Strategic Partnerships, Barnardo’s

    Rescue and Response Project

    William Willson, Operations Manager, Rescue and Response County Lines Project


    Marc Stevens, Senior Service Manager – Risk & Resilience, Catch22

    Sarah Parker, Research and Development Officer for Young People and Families, Catch22

    Listen UpChild Safeguarding Practice Review Panel

    Jahnine Davis, Founder and Director, Listen Up; Member, Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel

    North Yorkshire CC

    James Cliffe MBE, Group Manager, No Wrong Door Service, North Yorkshire County Council

    Southend-on-Sea BC

    Alex Bridge, Service Manager, Children’s Services, Southend-on-Sea Borough Council


    Matthew Scott, Director, TONIC

    • Local Authority Officers & Councillors
    • Central Government Departments & Agencies
    • Directors of Children’s Services
    • Local Safeguarding Children Boards
    • Safeguarding/Child Protection Teams
    • Heads of Children’s Social Care
    • Children & Family Services
    • Mental Health Support Teams
    • NHS Health Workers
    • Family & Parental Support Workers
    • Domestic Violence Co-ordinators
    • Troubled Families Teams
    • Community Safety Teams
    • YOS/YOT Managers & Members
    • Police Authorities
    • Police & Crime Commissioners
    • olice Youth Engagement Officers
    • Neighbourhood Policing Officers & Practitioners
    • Organised Crime Police Teams
    • Police Community Support Officers (PCSOs)
    • Anti-Social Behaviour Coordinators
    • Drug & Alcohol Action Teams
    • Youth & Community Workers
    • Youth Inclusion Officers
    • Community Safety Officers & Managers
    • Crime & Disorder Reduction Partnerships
    • YOI Governors & Managers
    • Probation Officers & Managers
    • Offender Managers
    • Local Criminal Justice Boards
    • Criminal Justice Liaison Teams
    • Youth Inclusion & Support Panel Members
    • Chairs & Chiefs of Probation Boards
    • Social Workers
    • Head Teachers, Deputy Heads & Assistant Heads
    • Pupil Referral Units
    • Education Welfare Services
    • Local Education Authorities
    • Community Psychology & Mentoring Services
    • Court Service, Judges & Magistrates
    • Criminologists
    • Diversity & Equality Officers
    • Academics & Researchers

    We are delighted to offer a range of sponsorship, exhibition and marketing opportunities across our portfolio of public policy events**. Whether you're interested in headline sponsorship or a simple delegate pack insert, we can provide tailor-made solutions to help deliver your profile-raising, communication and marketing strategies. We also provide subsidised rates for public sector and non-commercial organisations and are always keen to develop mutually beneficial partnership arrangements.

    **Not available for ONLINE events

    For more information or to discuss the options available, please get in touch with the events team on 01753 373096, or email:

    Example packages include:

      Headline Sponsor Package:
    • 15 minute speaking slot within afternoon panel session followed by ‘Question Time’ debate with attendees
    • Headline branding on event webpage with URL link
    • Headline branding on all pre-event marketing campaigns including brochures and email bulletins
    • Headline branding on delegate pack, lectern, directional signage and event holding slide
    • Profile in delegate pack
    • 3m x 2m exhibition space in refreshment area
    • Insert in delegate pack
    • 4 delegate places plus speaker
      Partner Sponsor Package:
    • Partner Branding on event webpage with URL link
    • Partner branding on all pre-event marketing campaigns including brochures and email bulletins
    • Partner branding on delegate pack, lectern, directional signage and event holding slide
    • Profile in delegate pack
    • 3m x 2m exhibition space in refreshment area
    • Insert in delegate pack
    • 4 delegate places
      Exhibition Package:
    • Profile in delegate pack
    • 3m x 2m exhibition space in refreshment area
    • Insert in delegate pack
    • 2 delegate places

    • Insert Package:
    • Up to A4 size or equivalent insert in delegate pack

    © 2022 Policy Foresight Ltd. All rights reserved