Safeguarding Adults and Children

Abuse of Trust

The primary purpose of the Abuse of Trust provisions is to provide protection for young people aged 16 and 17, who are considered particularly vulnerable to exploitation by those who hold a position of trust or authority in their lives.

Subject to a number of limited definitions, it is a criminal offence for a person, in a position of trust, to engage in any sexual activity with a person aged under 18 with whom they have a relationship of trust, irrespective of the age of consent even if the basis of their relationship is consensual. A relationship exists where a member of staff or volunteer is in a position of power or influence over young people aged 16 or 17 by virtue of the work or nature of the activity being undertaken. 

The principles apply irrespective of sexual orientation: neither homosexual nor heterosexual relationships are acceptable within a position of trust. They apply equally to all, without regard to gender, race, religion, sexual orientation or disability. This is an area where it is very important to avoid any sexual or other stereotyping. In addition, it is important to recognise that women as well as men may abuse a position of trust.

If you or others have concerns about the welfare of a child, young person or adult, you must report it immediately. For information, advice or assistance please contact the Child Care Assessment Team (CCAT) or the Adult Safeguarding Team.

Contact us

Child Care Assessment Team: 01437 776444

Adult Safeguarding Team: 01437 776056

Social Services out of Hours: 0300 333 2222


In an emergency ring 999

Non-emergency: 101

Dewis Cymru (opens in a new tab) is the place to go if you want information or advice about your well-being – or want to know how you can help somebody else.


ID: 7685, revised 03/11/2023