1160. Commercially Sexually Exploited Children (CSEC)

Approval:  Jennifer Strus, Assistant Secretary

Original Date:  September 29, 2015

Revised Date:  July 23, 2017

Sunset Review: July 1, 2021


To identify, document and determine appropriate and culturally responsive services for children or youth with an open case in Children’s Administration (CA) who are at risk of or are victims of commercial sexual exploitation (CSE).


This policy applies to all DCFS staff.


PL 106-386 - Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protections Act of 2000

PL 113-183 - Preventing Sex Trafficking and Strengthening Families Act

PL 114-22 - Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act of 2015

RCW 9.68A.100 - Commercial Sexual Abuse of a Minor – Penalties

RCW 9.68A.101 - Promoting Commercial Sexual Abuse of Minor - Penalty

RCW 9.68A.102 - Promoting Travel for Commercial Sexual Abuse of a Minor - Penalty

RCW 9.68A.103 - Permitting Commercial Sexual Abuse of a Minor - Penalty

RCW 26.44.020 - Definitions

RCW 26.44.030 - Reports – Duty and Authority to Make – Duty of Receiving Agency – Duty to Notify – Case Planning and Consultation – Penalty for Unauthorized Exchange of Information – Filing Dependency Petitions – Investigations – Interviews of Children – Records – Risk Assessment Process


  1. A child or youth will receive a screening to assess whether he or she is a victim of CSE when:
    1. He or she is involved in an open case in any program within CA, in-home with his or her parent or guardian or placed in out-of-home care, and there is suspicion, indication or confirmation that the child or youth may be a victim of CSE.
    2. The child is age 11 years or older at the time of Child and Family Welfare Services (CFWS) case opening either in-home or out-of-home.
    3. The child or youth has returned to placement after being missing from care.
  2. CA will report to law enforcement within 24 hours any child or youth who has been indicated or confirmed as CSEC regardless of whether or not the child or youth believes he or she has been victimized. CA staff will document the report to law enforcement on the Intake Referral tab in FamLink including the date and time of report and name of the law enforcement agency.
  3. Any CA staff who suspects or learns that a child or youth has been sexually exploited will follow the mandatory reporting statute and make a report to intake.
  4. A shared planning meeting will be held for all children or youth in the care and custody of CA when there is indication or confirmation of CSE.


  1. Screening Children and Youth for CSE Using the CSEC Screening Tool DSHS 15-476
    1. Caseworkers will screen all children and youth involved in open cases (Child Protective Services (CPS) investigations and Family Assessment Response, Division of Licensed Resources(DLR)/CPS, Family Reconciliation Services (FRS), Family Voluntary Services (FVS), CFWS and Adoption) when there is an allegation, suspicion, indication or confirmation that the child is a victim of CSE.
    2. Child Health and Education Tracking (CHET) workers who are co-assigned will screen all youth in the care and custody of CA age 11 years and older at initial placement unless the child has already been screened within 30 days of his or her out-of-home placement.
    3. Missing from Care Locators who are co-assigned will screen children and youth missing from care upon their return from a run episode.
    4. CFWS caseworkers will screen all children and youth:
      1. Age 11 years and older at the time of CFWS case opening if not screened by a CHET worker. This includes children and youth who remain in-home and those placed in out-of-home care.
      2. Who return from a run episode if the screen is not completed by a co-assigned Missing from Care Locator.
  2. Case Planning and Services
    1. If the results of the screening tool determine the child or youth is indicated or confirmed as a CSEC, the DCFS caseworker will:
      1. Assess the child and family needs and refer to appropriate services.
      2. Conduct a shared planning meeting for all children or youth in the care and custody of CA when the CSEC Screening Tool results identify new indicators or confirmation of CSEC to develop a case plan for safety and stability that addresses needs including but not limited to:
        1. Safety
        2. Placement stability
        3. Permanency Plan
        4. Social activities, including prudent parenting standards
        5. Cultural needs
        6. Education
        7. Medical, substance abuse and mental health treatment
        8. Independent Living Skills Program (ILS)
      3. Refer children or youth newly confirmed as a CSEC for medical screening and specialized CSEC services as available and appropriate.
      4. Assess and address any additional identified health or safety concerns.
      5. Document the case plan and services in FamLink under the Shared Planning tab or case plan.
    2. If the child or youth is a household member of a licensed provider and the screening tool results determine the child or youth is indicated or confirmed for CSEC, the DLR/CPS investigator is responsible for the investigation and will refer the case to DCFS for services.


  • CSEC Screening Tool (DSHS 15-476)