Manitoba

Manitoba Family Services

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Volume 1:
Agency Standards
Chapter 3:
Child Protection
Section 5:
Child Sexual Exploitation
Approved:
2010/06/28
Last revised:
Volume 1:
Agency Standards
Chapter 2:
Services to Families
Section 5:
Voluntary Placement of Children
Approved:
2008/07/02
Last revised:
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Child Sexual Exploitation

The focus of this manual section is on children (persons under 18 years of age) who are coerced, lured or engaged into a sexual act, exploited through the sex trade or pornography, with or without their consent, in exchange for money, drugs, shelter, food protection or other necessities or rewards.

Policies and standards in this manual section are in addition to those in Section 1.3.3, Child Abuse, and Section 1.3.4 and Provincial Child Abuse Investigations. Other relevant manual sections include Section 1.3.7, Working with Law Enforcement and Section 1.4.7, Absent and Missing Children.

Legislation
Policy
Standards

Legislation

Child and Family Services Act
Criminal Code of Canada
Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada)

The Child and Family Services Act

Definitions
Reporting Requirements
Offence Provisions

Definitions

The following definitions in section 1 of The Child and Family Services Act are directly relevant to this manual section:

  • Child abuse is as an act or omission by a person that results in physical injury to a child, emotional disability of a permanent nature or likely to result in such a disability, or sexual exploitation of a child with or without a child’s consent.
  • Child pornography has the same meaning as in section 163.1 of the Criminal Code (Canada).
  • Reporting entity is an organization, agency or person designated by regulation (see the Child Pornography Reporting Regulation, M.R. 79/2009).

Section 17 of the Act states a child is in need of protection where the life, health or emotional well-being of the child is endangered by the act or omission of a person. Illustrations in subsection (2) include a child who is abused or in danger of being abused including where the child is likely to suffer harm or injury due to child pornography.

Reporting Requirements

Subsection 18(1) of The Child and Family Services Act requires a person to report a child in need of protection (including abuse). Subsection (1.1) states when the person must report to an agency. Subsection (1.0.1) also requires a person to report possible child pornography to a reporting entity. Subsection 18.1(2) pertains to protecting the identity of informants.

Sections 18.2 through 18.7 prescribe the actions required of agencies, police and reporting entities in response to information or reports that indicate a child is or might be in need of protection.

Under section 21 of the Act, an agency has the power to apprehend a child in need of protection. Subsection 22(1) states a child in care may be apprehended.

Offence Provisions

Offence provisions in The Child and Family Services Act relevant to the issue of child sexual exploitation include causing a child to be in need of protection and failing to report children in need of protection (section 18), interference with children in care (section 52) and the sale of children (section 84).

Criminal Code of Canada

The Criminal Code contains a number of offences relating to the sexual exploitation of children. For example, Sections 151, 152 and 153 pertain to sexual offences, sections 170, 171, 172 and 172.1 to corrupting morals, sections 212 and 213 to procuring and prostitution, sections 179.1 and 180 to kidnapping and abduction, and sections 270.01 to .04 to human trafficking.

Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada)

In June 2002, the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (Canada) criminalized human trafficking, providing law enforcement with a specific mandate and tools to combat the issue of international human trafficking. In November 2005, amendments to the Criminal Code were made to address human trafficking, more specifically the issue of victim exploitation. Sections 279.01 to .04 of the code apply to both international and domestic human trafficking (which includes sex trafficking)

Policy

Sexual Exploitation of Children
Agency Services
Other Services and Resources
Reporting and Investigating Child Pornography

Sexual Exploitation of Children

Sexual exploitation of children (persons under 18 years of age) is child sexual abuse and children who are victims are in need of protection. The definition of abuse in section 1 of The Child and Family Services Act applies to any person, not just a parent, guardian or person who has the care, custody, control or charge of a child. It is a critical issue that affects all communities and requires a comprehensive response involving prevention, child protection investigations, prosecution of exploiters, and protection of the victims and their families.

In December 2002, Manitoba launched a strategy to address a growing concern about the sexual exploitation of children. The Manitoba child sexual exploitation strategy requires increased access to training around the province and a network of dedicated workers trained to develop and share expertise on sexual exploitation within their organizations and networks. In 2008 the province released an update on the strategy. Tracia’s Trust requires Manitobans to work together to end child sexual exploitation.

This part provides a brief description of the following forms of child sexual exploitation:

Prostitution
Sex Trafficking
Sex Tourism
Child Pornography and Exploitive Child Modeling
Internet Luring

Prostitution

The Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography defines child prostitution as the use of a child in sexual activities for remuneration or any other form of consideration.

 Typically, sexual exploitation of children through prostitution occurs in one of two ways: an exploiter intermediary (for example, a pimp or drug dealer) controls or oversees the child’s activities for profit, or an abuser (john) negotiates an exchange directly with a child. Most often it occurs in particular environments or homes, or particular streets and zones. Sometimes it is not organized, but most usually it is, either on a small scale through individual exploiters or on a large scale through extensive criminal networks. It may also occur in other locations when children are forced or induced into exchanging sex for basic needs such as accommodation, food, clothing and safety, and for favours such as cigarettes, alcohol, drugs and extra pocket money.

Sex Trafficking

Sex trafficking is a form of human trafficking, which is the illegal trade of human beings for the purposes of commercial sexual exploitation or forced labor; a modern-day form of slavery.
Human trafficking may occur across or within borders, may involve extensive organized crime networks, and is clearly a violation of the basic human rights of its victims. Domestic trafficking refers to trafficking within Canada. International trafficking also refers to trafficking within Canada, but the victim in the process of being trafficked, crossed an international border.

All children in Manitoba who may be victims of human trafficking, no matter their province or country of origin, are afforded full access to child protection services in Manitoba.

The United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime is the main international instrument in the fight against transnational organized crime. The Human Trafficking National Coordination Centre was established by the RCMP to work in collaboration with international, national, provincial and municipal agencies and non-governmental organizations to develop policies, tools, mechanisms and initiatives to fight human trafficking in Canada and abroad.

Sex Tourism

The World Tourism Organization, a specialized agency of the United Nations, defines sex tourism as “trips organized from within the tourism sector, or from outside this sector but using its structures and networks, with the primary purpose of effecting a commercial sexual relationship by the tourist with residents at the destination.”

Article 34 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child recognizes the cross-border aspects of the sexual exploitation of children, as is often the case in child sex tourism, by requiring governments to take action through national, bilateral and multilateral measures. Article 35 calls for similar action with regard to abduction, sale and trafficking of children, which is linked to the global child sex industry.

Article 10 of the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography commits signatories to take all necessary steps to strengthen international cooperation by multinational, regional and bilateral arrangements.

Canada has responded to the convention and protocol through an amendment to the Criminal Code. Canadian citizens and permanent residents of Canada who travel to another country to engage in sexual acts with children are now committing an offence under subsection 7(4.1) of the code.

Child Pornography and Exploitive Child Modelling

Child pornography is also a child protection issue from two aspects: the children who are victimized and the persons who produce or view the images. In many cases, a real child has been sexually abused in the production of child pornographic materials and then re-victimized over and over again each time the illegal material is viewed by perpetrators of child pornography. This includes persons in Manitoba who produce, host, distribute or access child pornography.

In contrast, exploitive child modelling is the display of a child through any medium including but not limited to a website, without a direct or indirect purpose of marketing a product or service other than the image of a child model. Many of the images fall just short of meeting the legal criteria for child pornography. However, possession of exploiting child modelling material may be indicative of a person’s sexual interest in children. Also, engagement of children in exploitive child modelling is frequently used to lure and groom a child for involvement in child pornography.

The object of The Worker Recruitment and Protection Act (Manitoba) is to protect young models and temporary foreign workers from exploitation. Child performer is defined in section 1 of this Act. Licensing requirements under section 2 include child talent agency business and child performer recruitment. Section 14 pertains to work permits for child performers.

Internet Luring

This form of child sexual exploitation involves approaching a child over the Internet for the purpose of facilitating the commission of a sexual offence.

In 2002, section 172.1 was added to the Code to criminalize electronic communication with a person believed to be a child for the purpose of facilitating the commission of sexual offences.

Agency Services

All sexually exploited children in Manitoba are in need of protection; they are among the most frequently abused, missing (lost) and victim to violent acts including murder. The majority of sexually exploited children are already in the care of child and family services agencies.

Child Protection Intervention
Working Closely with Law Enforcement
Providing Ongoing Service
Training for Agency Workers

Child Protection Intervention

Child and family services agencies have a statutory duty to investigate all reports of child sexual exploitation (see Child Protection Investigations in Section 1.1.2, Assessment) and to intervene to protect child victims.

Child abuse investigative procedures also apply (see Child Abuse Investigations in Section 1.3.3, Child Abuse). In some instances, child victims alleged in the report may not reside in Manitoba; however, agencies are still required to investigate and conduct an assessment of risk to Manitoba children posed by an alleged perpetrator if that person resides or was located for a period of time in Manitoba. For example, child victims may not reside in Manitoba in situations involving sex trafficking, sex tourism, child pornography and Internet luring.

A consistent and thorough approach is essential. For example, an agency receives a report that an adult male is harbouring an adolescent female for the purpose of engaging her in prostitution. The investigating agency subsequently learns there are other adolescent female victims. The agency must ensure all children (youth) are removed from the situation and that the adult male does not pose an immediate risk to other children.

Working Closely with Law Enforcement

As noted in Section 1.3.7, Working with Law Enforcement, it is critical that agencies work closely with police when intervening in cases involving child sexual exploitation. This is for the following reasons:

  • Care must be taken not to interfere with or otherwise jeopardize criminal investigations.
  • Child sexual exploitation often occurs through gangs or criminal networks. Assistance by police is essential to ensure worker safety.
  • Reporting and ongoing sharing of information is essential for deterring and prosecuting persons suspected of sexually exploiting children.
Providing Ongoing Service

On receiving a report or referral regarding suspected or alleged sexual exploitation of a child, a agency designated to provide intake services must complete the intake process and, when applicable, make a determination whether a case is to be opened for ongoing service (see Recording Requirements in this manual section.)

When the child victim does not reside in Manitoba and the jurisdiction where the child resides is known, the investigating agency must notify the appropriate child welfare authority in that jurisdiction.

Cases should not be closed at intake unless and until a decision is made that a child in Manitoba is not in need of protection and a suspected or alleged offender does not reside in Manitoba. There must be an open child protection record on a suspected or alleged offender in Manitoba. 

Extraordinary measures may be indicated for sexually exploited children. For example, when a child’s life may be in danger due to a serious threat posed by someone exploiting the child such as a pimp, drug dealer or organized crime member, the child may require relocation to a confidential location. When a child is at risk of being moved across international borders, such as in cases involving sex trafficking and Internet luring, an agency may need to confiscate a child’s passport.

Training for Agency Workers

Agency staff responsible for managing complex cases involving any form of child sexual exploitation require specialized training. New or inexperienced workers without this specialized training should not be assigned these types of cases. Child and family services authorities have a key role in assisting and supporting their agencies in this regard, especially for rural and northern agencies with generalized caseloads. 

Recording Requirements

Agencies record information on a child sexual exploitation referral in accordance with provincial policies regarding the Intake Module in Section 1.1.1, Intake, recording practices in Section 1.3.1, Child Protection Services, and printing and retention of email in Section 1.7.1, Service Records. The issue management list in the Intake Module contains a number of items directly relevant to child sexual exploitation.

Other Services and Resources

Child and family services agencies are required under subsection 7(1) of The Child and Family Services Act to work with other human services systems to resolve problems in the social and community environment likely to place children and families at risk. The Tracia’s Trust report identified a need to coordinate both existing services and any new initiatives in order to maximize service effectiveness to sexually exploited children.

Community Services and Resources
Specialized Placement Resources
Public Safety Investigations
Child Protection Branch

Community Services and Resources

Community services and resources relevant to more effectively addressing the issue of child sexual exploitation include:

Specialized Placement Resources

Specialized placement resources have been developed for sexually exploited children. Staff at these resources have specialized training and expertise. Available resources include a safe transition home in Winnipeg, a rural healing lodge and specialized foster care beds in rural locations close to Winnipeg.

Agencies are encouraged to contact the Provincial Placement Desk at the Child Protection Branch for more information on placement options and resources.

Public Safety Investigations

The Safer Communities and Neighbourhoods Act provides for investigations of complaints and orders with respect to a community or neighbourhood being adversely affected by activities on or near a property.

An agency may make a referral to a Public Safety Investigations Unit when a child or youth is found at a private residence suspected of illegal activities such as alcohol or drug distribution or sexual exploitation (see definition of specific use in section 1 of The Safer Communities and Neighborhoods Act).

Conversely, a public safety investigator who finds that children in a residence under investigation are or might be in need of protection has a statutory obligation under The Child and Family Services Act to report the matter to an agency.

The Public Safety Investigations Unit has a mandate to conduct investigations throughout the province. This mandate includes First Nation reserves that have passed a by-law endorsed by Indian and Northern Affairs Canada. For more information on the unit or to make a referral, contact:

Public Safety Investigations Unit
1430-405 Broadway
Winnipeg MB 43C 3L6
Phone: 945-3475
Toll Free: 1-800-954-9361
Website: www.gov.mb.ca/justice/safe/scna

Child Protection Branch

Responsibilities of the Child Protection Branch relevant to this manual section are as follows:

  • conducting provincial child abuse investigations (Section 1.3.4, Provincial Child Abuse Investigations),
  • providing case consultations to assist agencies in challenging child protection investigation such as cases involving third-party child sexual exploitation, sexual exploitation networks, sex trafficking and sex tourism,
  • operating the interprovincial desk (see Provincial/Territorial Protocol in Section 1.3.1, Child Protection Services.

Reporting and Investigating Child Pornography

This part covers additional requirements specific to child pornography based on amendments to The Child and Family Services Act that came into force in April 2009.

Reporting Entities
Law Enforcement
Child and Family Services
Handling Child Pornographic Material
Processing Referrals from Cybertip

Reporting Entities

Section 1 of the Child Pornography Reporting Regulation defines a reporting entity record and section 2 designates the Canadian Centre for Child Protection Inc. as a reporting entity for the purpose of receiving reports of child pornography under subsection 18(1.0.1) of The Child and Family Services Act. Sections 3, 4 and 5 pertain to security safeguards, retention and destruction of reporting entity records.

Canadian Centre for Child Protection operates Cybertip, Canada’s national tip line for reporting the online sexual exploitation of children. Cybertip accepts reports from any and all sources regarding:

  • child pornography (child abuse images and material)
  • online luring
  • child exploitation through prostitution
  • travelling to sexually exploit children
  • child trafficking

Pursuant to subsection 18(1.0.1) of The Child and Family Services Act, suspected or alleged child pornography must be reported to Cybertip. This includes child and family services agencies. Reports regarding possible child pornography are submitted to Cybertip on line at http://www.cybertip.ca or toll free at 866-658-9022.

In carrying out its duties under subsection 18.7(1) of the Act, Cybertip analyzes a child pornography report and, on concluding that the representation, material or recording is potentially illegal, reports the matter to law enforcement in the appropriate jurisdiction. If either the child victim or the suspected or alleged offender is believed to be in Manitoba, Cypertip also reports the matter to child and family services through Child and Family All Nations Coordinated Response Network (ANCR).

Cybertip operates an electronic portal that is used to send reports securely to the police, ANCR and the Child Protection Branch.

Cybertip is required to store, retain and destroy child pornography reports in accordance with the Child Pornography Reporting Regulation and service purchase agreements entered into with the Government of Manitoba.

Law Enforcement

The police investigate reports or instances of child pornography and decide whether a person should be charged with an offence under the Criminal Code, another federal statute, or a provincial statute.

Child and Family Services Agencies

CFS agencies are responsible for reporting possible child pornography to law enforcement and to Cybertip and for conducting child protection investigations of referrals from Cybertip, law enforcement and the general public regarding possible child victims and suspected or alleged offenders.

Handling Child Pornographic Material

It is illegal to access, possess or distribute child pornography. If unavoidable, agency staff must be vigilant when handling possible child pornography. It should be stored in a secure manner and handed over to the police as soon as possible.

Agency staff also have a responsibility to inform a person reporting child pornography not to disturb, search for and seize the material. Doing so could result in the person disturbing the integrity of evidence or implicating oneself in the commitment of an offence under the Criminal Code.

Processing Referrals from Cybertip

Child and Family All Nations Coordinated Response Network (ANCR) is the single point of contact for receiving and processing referrals from Cybertip regarding child victims or suspected or alleged offenders believed to be in Manitoba.

If the victim is a child in Manitoba, but outside ANCR jurisdiction, ANCR opens an intake case (see Intake Module in Section 1.1.1) and immediately transfers it to the appropriate designated intake agency (DIA), or if there is already an open case on the child’s family or the suspected or alleged offender, to the agency that has the open case. Information received from Cybertip is transferred securely through the Cybertip electronic portal and case information through the Child and Family Services Information System.

If the child victim or the suspected or alleged offender is in ANCR jurisdiction, ANCR completes the intake process using the Intake Module, conducts the investigation and, if applicable, transfers the case to an agency to provide ongoing services.

Standards

Child and Family Services Agencies
Law Enforcement
Canadian Child Protection Centre (Cybertip)

Child and Family Services

  1. Recording Reports of Child Sexual Exploitation – All reports received by an agency regarding possible child sexual exploitation are recorded in the Intake Module in accordance with the procedures stated under Recording Requirements in this manual section.
  2. Documenting Child Pornography Reports – In addition to Standard 6 in Section 1.3.1, Child Protection Services regarding child protection service decisions, and standards regarding record management practices in Section 1.7.1, Service Records, an intake worker or case manager, as the case may be, records the following information:
    • the medium used to create and distribute the pornography (for example, a visual representation, written material, audio recording),
    • if applicable, circumstances leading to accessing or receiving child pornography and steps taken to ensure the integrity and security of the material (see Child and Family Services Agencies in this manual section), and
    • if applicable, steps taken to alert a reporting person not to disturb or seek pornographic material any further (see Child and Family Services Agencies in this manual section).

Law Enforcement

  1. Law Enforcement Referrals – On concluding that a child has been sexually exploited through prostitution, human trafficking, sex tourism, internet luring or child pornography and that the child victim or the suspected or alleged offender is in Manitoba, a law enforcement agency pursuant to subsections 18.4(1.1) and 18.4(4) of The Child and Family Services Act (the Act):
    • refers the matter to the child and family services agency designated to provide joint intake and emergency services in the geographic area where the law enforcement agency is located,
    • share information with Cybertip as necessary to assist in any criminal investigations with respect to child pornography on the internet, and
    • when applicable, advises a suspected or alleged offender’s employer, supervisor or manager that the accused has been charged.

Canadian Centre for Child Protection (Cybertip)

  1. Reporting Child Pornography – Pursuant to subsection 18.7(1) of The Child and Family Services Act, on determining that a representation, material or recording is or might be child pornography, Cybertip immediately:
    • notifies the Child and Family All Nations Coordinated Response Network if the child victim or the suspected or alleged offender is or might be in Manitoba,
    • notifies the appropriate law enforcement agency of its finding, and
    • transmits information about the representation, material or recording believed to be child pornography it has accessed or received to the appropriate law enforcement agency in a manner approved by the law enforcement agency and consistent with relevant provisions in the service purchase agreement with the Government of Manitoba.
  2. Cybertip Record Management – Pursuant to subsection 18.7(2) of The Child and Family Services Act, Cybertip includes in its annual report information as to what steps were taken to ensure compliance with sections 3, 4 and 5 of the Child Pornography Reporting Regulation.

 

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