Phil Ashford is the Operational Lead for the CSE Response Unit at the NWG. In this role he has overseen the successful delivery of a Department for Education funded programme responsible for providing operational and strategic support for professionals and agencies tackling child sexual exploitation.
Over the past three years the Response Unit has supported over 30,000 professionals. The unit has carried out several strategic reviews of local responses to CSE and missing children and has contributed to establishing the transition from childhood to adulthood as a national area for development.
Phil previously managed a multi-agency CSE service in Sheffield for 3 years, overseeing the integration of a range of agencies and professionals into the co-located service. Phil managed this service at a time of heightened media, political and public scrutiny of CSE services following the publication of the Jay Report. During his time in this role Phil won two awards for his work with licensed trades in respect of CSE.
Phil’s background is in community safety where he worked for seven years based in neighbourhood police teams working in partnership with communities to provide long-term solutions to crime and anti-social behaviour, including serious youth violence and gang activity.
Phil has given evidence at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse in regard of the criminal justice system and current sits on CPS’ CSA/E Stakeholder group, as well as contributing to several other national roundtable meetings on CSE and associated issues.
In 2018 Phil completed his MA in Childhood and Youth: Applied Perspectives and was awarded a first for his dissertation on professional attitudes to 16 and 17-year olds affected by child sexual exploitation.