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Harmful sexual behaviour among children and young people

This guideline covers children and young people who display harmful sexual behaviour, including those on remand or serving community or custodial sentences. It aims to ensure these problems don't escalate and possibly lead to them being charged with a sexual offence. It also aims to ensure no-one is unnecessarily referred to specialist services.

'Young people' refers mainly to those aged 10 to 18 but also includes people up to 25 with special educational needs or a disability.

This guideline does not discuss people who have experienced sexual abuse. NICE will publish a guideline on child abuse and neglect in September 2017.

Who is it for?

  • Social workers, social and residential care practitioners and foster carers
  • Child and adolescent harmful sexual behaviour and mental health services
  • Neighbourhood and community support police officers and youth offending teams
  • Schools and youth services
  • National adolescent forensic services
  • Primary care, sexual health, drug and alcohol services
  • People who exhibit harmful sexual behaviour, their families and other members of the public.