County lines: a co-ordinated Welsh community response to child criminal exploitation

Child criminal exploitation (CCE) has been described as a national priority.

Much of what is known about CCE relates to county lines, a model of drug supply that has become widespread across the United Kingdom. County lines operate using a dedicated mobile phone number to sell drugs from larger cities to end users living in coastal, rural and market towns. While not all county lines use children, where children are targeted it can affect all ages and ethnicities.

In partnership with Barnardo’s, this 18-month exploratory research project aims at creating a toolkit for an effective service response to improve the outcomes for children at risk, as well as contribute to the knowledge base regarding the nature and scale of the problem, what approaches and interventions are most effective and how contextual safeguarding approaches can be used in practice within the Welsh context.

Lead researcher: Dr Nina Maxwell