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Advice for children

If you or someone you know is experiencing child abuse, please get in touch. You can use any of the ways listed below. We know taking this first step can be difficult. You might not know exactly what is wrong, or could be embarrassed about something that has happened. Just remember that we’re here to listen and make sure you and any other children are safe.

How to get in touch and get help If you suspect someone is in immediate danger, call 999 now. If you have a hearing or speech impairment, use our textphone service 18000 or text us on 999 if you’ve pre-registered with the emergencySMS service. If it isn’t an emergency, please get in touch in any of these other ways:

  • call our non-emergency, 24/7 number: 101. If you have a hearing or speech impairment, use our textphone service on 18001 101.

  • visit a police station to speak to an officer in person

  • contact the NSPCC to speak to a professional practitioner

  • contact Children’s Social Care through your local council and ask for the duty social worker

  • contact Crimestoppers confidentially and anonymously

  • talk to someone you trust, like a friend, a teacher or another adult

Remember, whatever has happened is not your fault, even though you might have been told it is. Children are often made to feel they are at fault, or that no one will believe them, or that something bad will happen to them or their family, but this is a threat to stop them from telling anyone. You are not to blame.

What happens after you get in touch We work with social workers who will support you, and we have specially trained plain-clothes officers who will listen to what you have to say.

Bedfordshire Police explain what happens at each step and make sure you know what's going on. Bedfordshire Police won’t make you do anything you don’t want to but we want to make sure you and any other children involved are safe. If you decide not to tell your parents Bedfordshire Police can provide details of people and agencies who can support you. Bedfordshire Police always take your feelings into consideration.

Bedfordshire Police work hard to protect children and ensure they are safe and live happy and healthy lives. Bedfordshire Police want to stop anyone from hurting them or putting them at risk.

How to help a friend or family member if they tell you they've been abused Your friend or family member might be scared or hurt. Listen carefully to what they say to you and try and persuade them to tell an adult they trust – perhaps their parents, a relative, a family friend or a teacher. They might want you to go with them to tell this person. If they do not want to tell anyone, you should tell an adult you trust who is not involved in what happened. They can help decide what to do.

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