Risky Business indeed!

“On April 7, 2011, the Risky Business staff team attended a conference at which Howard Woolfenden and his boss Joyce Thacker and many other child protection professionals were present.

Ms Thacker told all present that the council was securing funding for Risky Business for at least the following two years.

The next day, without warning, Risky Business was closed down.

Mr Woolfenden was part of the management team Risky Business sat under. He was the director of safeguarding and corporate parenting, which then looked to set up a new internal CSE team involving social workers.

Meanwhile, a member of the Rotherham Local Safeguarding Children’s Board recalled meetings where Risky Business was discussed and where Mr Woolfenden raised fears the offender intelligence could cause problems for the council, because of the ethnicity link. They told the Mail: “I just couldn’t understand this as we were talking about criminals and terrible crimes that had been committed rather than saving face.”

In August 2012 Mr Woolfenden resigned from Rotherham after accepting a post at Oxfordshire County Council. Oxford later cancelled his appointment before he started. No explanation for the decision was made public.”


You’d have thought it shouldn’t be beyond the wit of man to discover who ordered the closure of Risky Business. As for Woolfenden another demonstration that excrement not only rises, but circulates as well


9 thoughts on “Risky Business indeed!

  1. Jayne Senior was taken on by Sarah Champion to continue her work as victims still come to her for help. They secured emergency funding until May from London to do this. But ask them how their application to RMBC for funding beyond May fared? It’s revealing…


  2. mr woolfenden was set on by thacker to sort out the little roma children playing in the st’s around eastwood at all hours of the day /night


    • But isn’t it depressing the people who have so badly fail in one authority can up sticks and get another high paid job in another. I wouldn’t have much confidence in Birmingham, they have a bigger population of these predators and we know it’s been going on there for ages.


      • A lack of confidence which is entirely justified it would be fair to say Manc

        “The Mail has discovered how children across the region have been failed by police, councils and social services – with some known offenders not being prosecuted and victims being locked away in secure accommodation to protect them.

        The sickening situation was revealed by Birmingham Safeguarding Children Board (BSCB) in a Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) Prevention and Intervention Strategy published in September 2013. It was sent to partner agencies, including West Midlands Police, but was never issued to the media.

        It said: “The partnership arrangements in Birmingham are currently failing to protect our children from child sexual exploitation”



  3. There are a number of interesting aspects about the above link. Both Jay and Casey have some high praise for Risky Business, conversely Children’s Social Care into which RB was eventually amalgamated was seen to have failed

    “Risky Business was critical to the success of Operation Central, a joint operation
    between police and RMBC which ran between 2008 and 2010, and led to the
    conviction of five men for offences including rape and other sexual offences with
    children11. A ‘lessons learned’ report produced after this operation praised the role
    that Risky Business had played. The report noted that there were increased
    expectations on an already overstretched service and that an expanded multi agency
    service should be formed around Risky Business.

    Operation Czar which followed swiftly on from Operation Central was run very
    differently. A choice was made that Children’s Social Care would take the lead in
    working with the victims not Risky Business. The outcome was that the girls involved
    would not give evidence and the operation was unsuccessful. Following this, the
    murder of Child S and the subsequent Serious Case Review12 also had a significant
    impact on Risky Business and therefore the treatment of victims and action on CSE.
    This is dealt with elsewhere but the result was the closure of the Risky Business


    But neither apparently looked at the specifics of who ordered Risky Business to be closed down, the above link indicates that it was Joyce Thacker. Surely the circumstances behind the removal of the only effective anti-CSE operation should have been thoroughly investigated.

    Also in 2011 the Coalition for the Removal of Pimping had its funding withdrawn

    “A charity which supports the parents of sexually exploited children says its future is uncertain after it lost its government funding.

    The Coalition for the Removal of Pimping (Crop) helps 100 families of victims each year”


    After the 3rd Rochdale trial CROP was smeared, no doubt by the usual suspects

    “The vast majority are white families and the perpetrators are Pakistani Asians,” the organisation’s chair of trustees, Hilary Willmer, was quoted as saying. Sources inside Crop placed the percentage as high as 80 per cent, although Kurdish, Romanian and Albanian gangs were also involved.

    But today Crop has become nervous about making public statements on the racial dimension of the abuse. “We’ve been accused of being a cover for the BNP,” Ms Willmer told The Independent.

    Previously Ann Cryer and Julie Bindel had been placed on Islamophobia watch.

    No wonder there have been so many victims with the few effective voices against “localised child grooming” subjected to such dirty tricks.

    And one sees yet another Rotherham appeasement community cohesion re-tread like Woolfenden re-cycling by another Labour Council one really despairs that the will to tackle the horrific epidemic still actually exists where it matters


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