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What is child on child abuse

This area of the toolkit has been designed to support professionals to understand what ‘child-on-child’ abuse is. Information has been organised into the following four sections:

Definition – A definition of the term, ‘child-on-child abuse’ and the types of behaviours that may be included within this term.

The legal context and framework – An outline for professionals of the legal framework around child-on-child abuse, to support understanding of when a behaviour might be a crime and what this may mean in terms of a professional response.

Vulnerabilities and risk factors – Information regarding characteristics and circumstances that may mean that a child is more vulnerable to experiencing harmful behaviour from other children and those circumstances that may mean that a child is more likely to display harmful behaviour. It is important to note that a child who is displaying harmful behaviour may themselves be experiencing harm or be at risk of being harmed.

Language – Important considerations for professionals regarding the language that is used in relation to child-on-child abuse.