Why should you refer a child through the NRM?
Before referring a child through the NRM, the child must first be referred to the their local authority children's services so they are aware of the child and can put in place any necessary safeguarding measures.
Anyone who has a safeguarding responsibility for a child and is concerned that a child may be a victim of human trafficking has a responsibility for ensuring the safeguarding needs of the child are assessed and addressed and for reporting their trafficking concerns to a ‘first responder'.
Once safeguarding processes have been initiated, the first responder will then refer the child into the National Referral Mechanism using an NRM referral form.
Referring children into the NRM encourages the sharing of information between agencies and can help to ensure an appropriate safeguarding response.
It also helps the UK collect evidence and build an understanding of the patterns of child trafficking. This helps to shape policy and can aid police investigations into trafficking.
Resources for supporting a trafficked child victim
If you are a professional and you think a child may have been trafficked call the NSPCC Child Trafficking Advice Centre (CTAC) on 0808 800 5000 Monday to Friday 9.30am to 4.30pm or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Check out ECPAT's website for resources which will help professionals working with children to identify and support child victims of trafficking.