The Guardian has published an article, in which MPs have criticised local authorities, police and the criminal justice system for failing to protect the interests of vulnerable children from sexual exploitation.
This criticism follows an inquiry into child sexual exploitation by the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, and recent high profile cases into such exploitation, such as those in Oxford and Rochdale, where the local authorities were held to account for being “inexcusably slow to realise…the widespread, organised sexual abuse of children, many of them in the care of the local authority…”
In another worrying comment, the report criticised Greater Manchester Police for recording allegations of sexual exploitation as “non-crimes”.
David Tucker, the Head of Policy at the NSPCC, was quoted as saying that “This report is a damning indictment of systemic failure to protect vulnerable children and young people from horrific sexual abuse and exploitation. Obvious signs of abuse were missed by a number of agencies and there is no excuse for the way these girls were let down, often by the very people who were meant to protect and care for them.
“The victims in recent child sexual exploitation cases were too often ignored or treated as troublemakers. There now needs to be a culture change among police, CPS, the judiciary, and all child protection professionals, so they better understand how grooming gangs operate, and how young people’s behaviour could be a sign they are at risk of, or suffering, sexual exploitation.”
Jordans Solicitors welcome and support any such changes and policies which will aim to protect the vulnerable and helpless children from being exploited by sexual predators, and ensure that those responsible for such acts are brought to justice.
Read the full article here