It could be straight from the pages of a second rate work of fiction.
In the Advertiser Friday 1st February 2013 cabinet member for cohesion Cllr Mahroof Hussain MBE is reported to have denied that fears of offending certain groups had hampered Rotherham’s approach to Child Sexual Exploitation.
He said “ We don`t care what religion colour or creed people are, if they commit grooming offences they should be charged and prosecuted to the maximum extent, We don`t tiptoe around it”
Don`t tiptoe around it?
From the minutes of a Rotherham Local Safeguarding Children’s Board meeting:
”There are sensitivities of ethnicity with the potential to endanger the harmony of community relationships. Great care will be taken in drafting…this report to ensure that its findings embrace Rotherham’s qualities of Diversity. It is imperative that suggestions of a wider cultural phenomenon are avoided”
From the same Board, one of the factors that influenced the way the Board would manage the release of the report into the tragic death of Laura Wilson:
The impact on community cohesion.
Put the above into the context of the view from HASC member MP David Winnick you do have to ask what is going on?
Labour MP David Winnick said “the general impression” is that those alleged to be involved with child abuse in Rotherham “have been able to get away with their vile activity, without sufficient pressure from the authorities”.
Moving onto the governance of the Rotherham taxi trade, evidence that it has not been as robust as it should have been, again from the minutes of the Local Children’s Safeguarding Board:
Concern was also expressed regarding the recent case of a taxi driver who has had his CRB (Criminal Records Bureau) record cleared, despite there being intelligence on him with regard to child protection concerns.
A real anxiety for those supporting children subjected to grooming and abuse is that the children are reluctant to come forward in the fear of not being believed.
Therefore in the current climate it’s hard to comprehend that a Twitter feed would carry this deeply offensive headline:
Exposing the lies and half truths on Child exploitation
It would be interesting to find out whom in Rotherham distributed it and why, more importantly have any followers of the accounts taken those behind the offensive headline to task?
As it’s Rotherham, probably not.