Begging

This section of the procedures outlines issues to be considered and action to be taken for a child who is begging.

Begging

An adult begging for money may have a child with them whose role is to invoke public sympathy. A child may also beg alone or appear to be so doing.

Consideration of the needs of the child should include their age, the degree of adult supervision, time of day etc.

Where a Police Officer is made aware of such activity s/he should:

  • Deal with the offence of begging
  • Establish the identity and address of any involved child
  • Refer the child to children’s social care.

Children’s social care are expected to act on this referral by way of:

  • Undertaking an Initial Assessment and giving advice to the parent/carer about the inappropriate use of children for begging and the risks involved; or
  • Applying child protection procedures the information indicates the child is at risk of significant harm.

Activities such as ‘penny for the guy’, ‘trick or treat’ or carol singing are not normally regarded as begging if arrangements are age appropriate and effectively supervised.