The Problem With Rotherham: 1,400 Abused Girls Makes For A Good Headline
ALL papers lead with news that 1,400 girls were sexually abused in Rotherham, Yorkshire. The news is full of chilling testimonies delivered by grown women. They talk of being gang raped when below the age of consent (some as youing as 11), kept compliant by drugs, gifts, drink and threats of murder against them and their families and being ferried about the country to sex parties. Some children picked up from schools.
The rapists were mostly gangs of Asian men. The victims were mostly white girls.
The police treated the victims with contempt. The council ignored the allegations.
Yesterday the leader of the council, Roger Stone, resigned his post because of what he called “historic failings”.
This latest barrage of child abuse news comes from a report commissioned by Rotherham council. It deals with event between 1997 to 2013. Professor Alexis Jay, a former senior social worker who led the investigation into child abuse in Rotherham, says “children who had been doused in petrol and threatened with being set alight, threatened with guns, made to witness brutally violent rapes and threatened they would be next if they told anyone”.
The ones that did tell were ignored. Police did not investigate. There were no prosecutions. The rapists were above the law. Or, worse, they were part of the system.
The report states:
“By far the majority of perpetrators were described as Asian by victims. Some councillors seemed to think it was a one-off problem, which they hoped would go away. Several staff described their nervousness about identifying the ethnic origins of perpetrators for fear of being thought racist. Others remembered clear direction from their managers not to do so. Several councillors interviewed believed that by opening up these issues they could be ‘giving oxygen’ to racist perspectives that might in turn attract extremist political groups and threaten community cohesion.”
In 2010, five Asian men in 2010 after they were found guilty of abusing teenage girls:
Zafran Ramzan, 21, was jailed for nine years after being found guilty of raping a 16-year-old girl in her own home and two counts of sexual activity with a child. The other four men were convicted of sexual activity with a child.
Razwan Razaq, 30, was jailed for a total of 11 years. Umar Razaq, 24, for four and a half years. Both Adil Hussain, 20, and Mohsin Khan, 21, were sentenced to four years in prison. The five, who are all from Rotherham, have been placed on the sex offenders register.
The Sun and Mail blame the “PC Brigade” for the girls’ continuing plight.
The Sun says:
THE gang-rapes of hundreds of children by Asian predators were ignored by council officers for fear of being branded racist, a report revealed yesterday. At least 1,400 kids were “horrifically” abused in Rotherham, South Yorks over 16 years.
Asian rapists were protested for fear of triggering a race war? The Sun Says columns adds:
THE systematic rape and abuse of at least 1,400 children in Rotherham is a hideous, monstrous scandal. The pitiful response from the Labour council and police who chose to let it happen is unforgivable.
They knew about it for years. But the Left-wing council let it go on because the rapists were Asian.
Senior officials ordered worried staff to downplay it for fear of being accused of racism.
Think about that. They prioritised political correctness over the gang-rape of children.
Councillors doubtless feared upsetting Labour-voting Muslims too.
For their part, the police treated the victims — many of them white girls from care homes and troubled backgrounds — “with contempt”…
Rotherham, Rochdale, Derby, Oxford: grotesque child rape scandals allowed to fester through paranoia about racism.
When will the police and Britain’s Left-wing politicians put child safety before political correctness?
Sue Reid notes in the Mail:
In the politically correct culture of modern Britain, police, councillors and social services chiefs were terrified of being accused of racism if they highlighted crimes by racial minorities.
Instead, they shamefully blamed the girls for being out of control, wilful young teenagers who eagerly consented to sex with men old enough, in some cases, to be their fathers or even grandfathers in exchange for a ‘good time’.
Even the fact that the grooming gangs referred to their victims as ‘white trash’ did not seem to provoke a murmur of alarm from those in authority.
The Mail says more on race:
At least 1,400 girls were left to be abused by Asian men because the authorities were too scared to admit there was a race issue, a report said yesterday. Over a 16-year period, children as young as 11 were sexually exploited by gangs of men – most of them of Pakistani origin. But police and council officials suppressed evidence of the crimes because they feared being labelled racist.
No-one in authority addressed the issue of race.
The Times looks at the prevailing culture, which was not all that PC:
Evidence was also found of a “macho, sexist and bullying” culture within the town hall. Female social workers were advised by senior managers to wear short skirts if they wanted to make progress in their career.
The Independent focues on the place.
But what about the journalists? The Times highlights why we need a free Press:
When a serious case review was ordered into the 2010 murder of Laura Wilson, 17, the council’s safeguarding children board tried to withhold it from publication. The board, ordered to publish by the government, produced a report with heavy redactions that concealed information about the ethnicity of adults who had been suspected of grooming her for sex from the age of 11. It also hid details of care professionals’ involvement with the girl from the age of 11 to 15.
When the council discovered that The Times intended to publish information about care workers’ knowledge of Laura’s involvement with “Asian men”, it sought at great expense a High Court injunction barring publication.
It dropped the legal action in June 2012 after Michael Gove, the education secretary at the time, accused the board of withholding “relevant and important material”. Three months later, this newspaper revealed the extent of Rotherham’s failure to protect exploited children. The council’s response was to ask the police, and then a firm of solicitors, to investigate the leak of restricted information.
Who was Laura Wilson?
The spotlight fell on Rotherham in 2010, after Laura Wilson, 17, was murdered for bringing shame on the families of two Pakistani men who had used her for sex. It was later revealed that social workers had known for six years that the white teenage mother was at clear risk from predatory Asian gangs, and had received information about certain adults suspected of targeting her from the age of 11.
Laura, 17, had been groomed by a string of British Pakistanis before she was stabbed and thrown into a canal to die for informing her abusers’ families of the sexual relationships.
Her killer Ashtiaq Asghar, who was 18 at the time, was given a life sentence and will serve a minimum of 17-and-a-half years after he pleaded guilty to murdering Laura in October 2010.
In 2012, the council’s Safeguarding Children Board published a serious case review but key passages which reveal they knew she was at particular risk from ‘Asian men’ had been blocked out with black lines.
But what about the headline figure of 1400 victims?
The BBC says that figure could be higher:
At least 1,400 children were subjected to appalling sexual exploitation in Rotherham between 1997 and 2013, a report has found.
Have 1,400 victims been identified?
Prof Jay said: “No-one knows the true scale of child sexual exploitation in Rotherham over the years. Our conservative estimate is that approximately 1,400 children were sexually exploited over the full inquiry period, from 1997 to 2013.”
The report begins:
The Inquiry applied the definition of child sexual exploitation which is used in Government guidance and is set out in Appendix 4, paragraph 48 of this report. The methodology included reading a wide range of minutes, reports and case files. We also interviewed over a hundred people, either individually or in groups. I agreed with the Chief Executive that the cut-off point for file reading would be the end of September 2013, and that any evidence available to me up till June 2014 would be included in the report.
That headline figure is a guess.
The Scale of the Problem in Rotherham
4.1 Children’s social care introduced CSE as a category for referral in 2001. However, many exploited children were wrongly categorised as being ‘out of control’. Prior to January 2013, the Police did not have a separate category for CSE. Neither agency had compiled reliable data that the Inquiry could use to estimate the scale of the problem over time. There was good information about cases open to the CSE team or co-worked by them, but information about other children being supported by children’s social care was not easily obtained.
The Inquiry was given a list of 988 children known to children’s social care, or the Police. 51 were current cases and 937 historic. We read 66 case files in total.
4.4 We took a randomised sample of 19 current and 19 historic cases. In 95% of the files sampled, there was clear evidence that the child had been a victim of sexual exploitation. Only two children (5%) were at risk of being exploited rather than victims. From the random samples, we concluded that it was very probable that a high proportion of the 988 children were victims.
4.5 A further 28 case files were read. 22 were historic cases sampled from lists of suspected victims in police operations, including Central, Czar and Chard. Three were current cases brought to our attention during the course of the Inquiry, and three were historic cases of children who had been highlighted by national media. All 28 children were victims of sexual exploitation.
4.6 To help reach an overall estimate of the problem, we used reports to the Local Safeguarding Children Board (formerly the ACPC) and Council committees. We examined minutes of the Sexual Exploitation Forum and minutes of independently chaired Strategy meetings where individual children were discussed. These included inter-agency discussions about hundreds of children who had suffered, or were at
serious risk of sexual exploitation. We also had access to lists, and sometimes summary descriptions, of many hundreds of children who were supported by Risky Business, individually or in group sessions.
4.7 Taking all these sources together, the Inquiry concluded that at least 1400 children were sexually exploited between 1997 and 2013.
So. That headline figure stated as a fact is an educated guess.
But the key line in the report is this one:
This abuse is not confined to the past but continues to this day
Where is Charlene Downes?