Wrongs are put right

This letter from Labour candidate for Police and Crime Commissioner should be widely read:

Wrongs are put right

Your correspondent Paul Gibson is right to point out how important the recent child sexual exploitation trial was at Sheffield Crown Court.

It was important for the survivors to get the justice that had been denied them in the past. It was important that any others contemplating similar grooming of young people should know the kind of sentences such criminal behaviour will receive. It was important for Rotherham to know that historic wrongs are being put right. It was important for South Yorkshire Police to show they really have learnt the lessons of past mistakes. All this builds confidence for other victims past or present to come forward and know they will be listened to. Some have already done so since the trial.

Read on… http://www.thestar.co.uk/news/your-say/wrongs-are-put-right-1-7781110

One trial does not a solution make?

39 thoughts on “Wrongs are put right

  1. I attended a recent community meeting when Mr Billings spoke and answered questions. I was impressed by him. He appears to be taking South Yorkshire Police in the right direction.

    But I do have some serious questions for one of our representatives who is meant to be holding him to account.

    Yes, Caven Vines – it’s time to answer some questions.

    I understand that UKIP Councillor Caven Vines is one of Rotherham’s representatives on the Police and Crime Panel, whose job is to hold the Police and Crime Commissioner to account for his performance and the performance of South Yorkshire Police on a regular basis.

    Yet, I’ve just been told that he couldn’t be bothered to attend the meetings last November and January and, that when he did attend the last meeting on 4th March, he didn’t ask a single question of the Police and Crime Commissioner on either his written or oral report, nor did he have any comment to make.

    I’m told that it was obvious he hadn’t even read the reports.

    And – and you can’t make this up – when a member of the public asked Mr Vines to ask some questions on his behalf, he refused and told him that he didn’t represent the public at this meeting. I thought that was what he was there for!

    Well, clearly, if he can’t be bothered to attend or read his reports or ask any questions, what the heck is he doing as a member of the Panel?

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    • Smokescreen Janet? This particular thread is about our esteemed PCC, why do you insist on twisting it to have a pop at a UKIP councillor? Couldn’t be because he’s not Labour, could it?

      Please stay on topic and drop the diversionary tactics.

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    • I have posted an update on this issue at:
      https://rotherhampolitics.wordpress.com/2016/03/06/caven-vines-speaks-directly-to-his-constituents/

      Some people ( R Wilde and Anonymous – which Anonymous is this one?) seem to be obsessed with political party issues.

      I am not. I’m obsessed by competence and performance, as I am with my business interests.

      As I see it, the current Commissioner is putting in a very solid performance and is extremely competent.

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      • 101? Senior police workers driving blue light cars, never holds police to account. HMIC report second lowest grade. Over 80 police officers have left with no pension and no job to go to. Never makes the hard decisions sets up panels instead. Yes great

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      • Further move victim support in Rotherham had to move in to the police station on his watch. Even you a hard core labour person must admit that this is unacceptable

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      • No Janet, I just don’t like the way you constantly use this blog to have a go at one particular UKIP Councillor, regardless of the topic being discussed 🙂

        Your assessment of Dr Billings’ performance is somewhat wide of the mark.

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      • May be it is because I hate bombast and blather of which Councillor Vines appears to be an arch exponent.

        Further, whenever he is asked a serious question about his own performance or UKIP policies, he ducks and dives or – as in this case – is disgracefully duplicitous in his response.

        Because I am interested in my grandchildren’s education, I have asked him on several occasions about UKIP’s policy on grammar schools (‘UKIP will ensure there is a grammar school in every town’ – is again part of UKIP’s policy programme for local government) but he simply won’t answer:
        – which Rotherham school is to become the grammar school, or
        – what process will be used to determine which is to be the grammar school in Rotherham
        if UKIP wins the local elections.

        I haven’t asked the other parties’ representatives because none of them are promising the return of grammar schools.

        May be you know the answer, R Wilde?

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      • I wouldn’t have a clue about UKIPs choice Janet, I’m not a UKIP member and I don’t vote for them
        .
        If you feel Councillor Vines is in some way shirking his responsibilities, outline your concerns in an email to Rik to start a new thread on your favourite topic. Just stop hijacking other threads please 🙂

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      • With respect, my initial comments were entirely in line with this thread. It is you and others who have attempted to divert it to other topics.

        [And, just for the record, i have asked the questions on grammar schools on the correct thread on a number of occasions. However, you will find that ‘Rik’, who I presume to be the owner of this site, has prevented me from pursuing those questions.]

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      • With respect Janet, this thread is about a letter the PCC has written, it was you who tried to turn it into something else. You wrote one short paragraph about Dr Billings, conveniently ignoring the content of the letter in question while you were at it. You then added seven more paragraphs dedicated to your vendetta against Councillor Vines. And you accuse me of trying divert attention away from the topic at hand?

        As my old Grandmother would have said “geeoer wi yer”

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    • How interesting……..and how very strange.

      The e-mail update that has been sent to me (I’m signed up to ‘Notify me of new comments via e-mail) actually reads:

      “You ask them every year Robin. Time to move on, UKIP policy has, I understand.”

      Note: Not ‘Janet’ but ‘Robin’. I realised my error and corrected it straight away,Rik.

      Of course, this may be yet another diversionary tactic but, as I have confirmed on several occasions, I am not ‘Robin’ – whoever he or she might be.

      So, it’s time to put this to bed. I am happy to put up £1000 (or £5000, or £10,000 or £50,000 if you wish) to settle this.

      • You (Rik or anyone else who is pursuing this nonsense) nominate a solicitor, preferably a Partner. [Just for the record, I have business and personal relationships with partners at Irwin Mitchells, Nabarros and Taylor & Emmet – so, to avoid any allegation of collusion, you may wish to avoid them.]
      • You brief and commission them to determine whether I am or am not ‘Robin’. You deposit £1000 (or £5000 or £10,000 or…) plus their fee (£200 should cover it).
      • You tell me who you have appointed.
      • I will deposit £1000 (or…) plus £200 with the solicitor.
      • I will then provide the solicitor with proof – to his or her satisfaction – that I am not, and never have been Robin etc etc. In which case, my deposit will be returned to me and your deposit will go to Victim Support, Rotherham.
      • If I fail to do that, the solicitor keeps his fee and arranges for my £1000 (or £10,000 or) to be donated to Victim Support, Rotherham and returns your deposit to you.

      It’s simple.

      It’s time to Put up, or shut up.

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      • Janet
        I think you are mistaken on this, and I have some written evidence that supports the view that both Cavin Vine and Rik are aware that you are not Robin, and look I have a lot of time for both of you, and no time whatsoever for UKIP.
        RR
        Please, lets all calm down a bit.

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      • “Of course, this may be yet another diversionary tactic”

        You aren’t wrong there Janet, your whole rant is just that. A diversionary tactic.

        You seem to like repeating yourself, so I’ll do the same shall I?

        “With respect Janet, this thread is about a letter the PCC has written, it was you who tried to turn it into something else. You wrote one short paragraph about Dr Billings, conveniently ignoring the content of the letter in question while you were at it. You then added seven more paragraphs dedicated to your vendetta against Councillor Vines. And you accuse me of trying divert attention away from the topic at hand?”

        And now you’ve tried to do it again with your nonsensical rant at Rik, sneaking in a veiled threat to set your solicitor friends onto him while you were at it. Bravo Janet, a certain ex Labour Councillor who was fond of the same tactic would be proud of you.

        Keep it up Janet, keep on convincing yourself that it’s me who is trying to distract attention away from the subject matter. Everyone else can see who is REALLY trying to muddy the waters. I’ll give you a hint – it’s not me 🙂

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      • To: A Regular Reader

        As rothpol says:
        March 11, 2016 at 7:26 pm
        I realised my error and corrected it straight away, Rik.

        However, Rothpol has also inserted this:

        Note: Not ‘Janet’ but ‘Robin’. I realised my error and corrected it straight away,Rik.

        into my text,

        so things are a little confusing.

        So, to avoid further confusion, it would help if people stopped making this silly accusation.

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      • To:
        R. Wilde says:
        March 11, 2016 at 8:39 pm

        You wrote:
        “…….you’ve tried to do it again with your nonsensical rant at Rik, sneaking in a veiled threat to set your solicitor friends onto him while you were at it. Bravo Janet, a certain ex Labour Councillor who was fond of the same tactic would be proud of you.”

        1. It wasn’t a nonsensical rant at Rik.
        He has admitted – although he now says that it was just ‘the slip of the keyboard’ – that he had called me Janet [I have the e-mail to confirm] but then changed it to Janet, which is what appears above.

        So, it wasn’t my rant that was nonsensical, it was the assertion that I am ‘Robin’, whoever he or she is.

        2. There is no ‘sneaky veiled threat’.
        On a number of occasions I have been accused of being someone called ‘Robin’. I have rebutted it very clearly on a number of occasions.
        I have given Rik – and you for that matter – the opportunity to have your assertion or my rebuttal determined by a completely independent solicitor.

        It’s easy to resolve. Put up, or shut up.

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      • I’ve nothing to put up because to my knowledge I’ve never called you Robin, or anything other than Janet, Janet. I have in fact been nothing but polite to you, as I am sure a recap of any of our conversations over this entire site would reveal. So why would I even need a solicitor? You accused me of diversionary tactics, but it’s plain for all to see that it’s you doing that, not me. If you want to take me to court over it you’re welcome to try, I am happy to let a court decide if it’s you or me using diversionary tactics, if that’s what you want?

        As for the sneaky veiled threat, you said, and I quote:

        ” [Just for the record, I have business and personal relationships with partners at Irwin Mitchells, Nabarros and Taylor & Emmet – so, to avoid any allegation of collusion, you may wish to avoid them.]”

        What you are saying right there is “You don’t want to mess with me, I’ve got some very powerful friends”. It was a veiled threat. Poorly veiled, but still a threat. As I correctly stated, a former RMBC Labour Councillor was fond of the same tactic.

        So there we have it Janet, if really really want to involve your solicitor friends go for it, I am not afraid of making you look daft in court if you want to go down that route, and I don’t need an expensive solicitor to do it. I didn’t call you Robin, but you did accuse me of something I didn’t do. YOU lied about ME, not the other way round.

        Time for you to put up or shut up Janet, either take me to court or end this charade now and get back to discussing the subject matter (Dr Billings’ letter above), which you continue to avoid 🙂

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  2. After speaking to a number of victims families I have had mixed reports about Mr Billings, lets NOT remember so many people still need to be brought to account. The question is will he, even if they are from his own party??? He never holds the police to account, as was pointed out on Look North from a muslim community member. As we have a large number of police officers that have been named and nothing has happened.

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    • ‘We have a large number of police officers that have been named and nothing has happened.’

      Did you not read the article headlined above?

      It includes Mr Billings saying:
      ‘Paul Gibson worries, however, that South Yorkshire Police will be investigating itself over past failures. This is not so. Those who may have failed have been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission. The IPCC has had these complaints for two years and have still not reported.This is intolerable. We need to know about any misconduct ………’

      I understand why victims’ families are frustrated. We all ought to be frustrated by the abysmal performance of the IPCC.

      And, as for that Look North interview………it looked nothing more than someone (1) desperate to distract attention from the difficult questions he was being asked, and (2) who was intent on self-promotion.

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  3. And, as for that Look North interview………it looked nothing more than someone (1) desperate to distract attention from the difficult questions he was being asked, and (2) who was intent on self-promotion.

    Mohammed Shafiq has been highly praised by the victims and survivors, he has highlighted the issues surrounding the Asian Community very honestly. He answered the questions Mr billings did not you obviously did NOT watch it.

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  4. I assume that the self promoting Muslim commentator on Look North would be Rotherham’s Mr Bean himself ? Trying to deflect attention from his brethren who are awaiting trial re a serious riot on Wellgate I would imagine.

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  5. The IPCC is a long grass mechanism for putting distance between the event and the almost inevitable lack of action. Alan could do a lot more than he does. I suspect he is a willing listener to his partisan advisors in the agencies under ‘so called’ investigation. The police commissioner is an executive position whose powers are only rivalled by government ministers. He has no need to take advice or listen to it, he might listen to the various bodies that seek to control the power of the position but he can ignore them at I his pleasure.
    The establishment candidates in general have this power limited by their party and in the case of the Tories the home secretary too, They will not exercise the power they hold nor will they be enlightened as to what they could do if they so wished.

    Those who travel by broom do not usually engage in witch hunts.

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    • I spoke to my solicitor sibling about your comments. The response does not give you succour.

      Investigations in to allegations of police officer misconduct are proscribed by legislation. Normally, such investigations are undertaken by the employing police force (here, SYP). But, it appears that everyone (including those posting on this site) was absolutely convinced that SYP should not be investigating its own officers. Therefore, it was all referred to IPCC, the only other body having the legal powers to conduct such investigations.

      The only alternative would be via a Public Inquiry, which would be entirely in the gift of the Home Secretary and Parliament. [Bring it on, says sibling: “It would be a lawyers’ paradise”!]

      It appears that there is little that the Commissioner can do, other than to lobby privately and publicly.

      And, now, I believe, the IPCC is to be replaced by another body. I hope this means there won’t be further delay.

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  6. The IPCC is a “Not Fit For Purpose” organisation both from the point of the public and the police. They drag their feet at every end and turn, officers under investigation are left hanging or suspended, often on spurious accusations ( and I don’t mean the CSE enquiry) for unacceptable lengths of time why, because they are totally incompetent and have been since their inception.

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  7. Did Alan Billings mention why there has not been an inquest into the death of p c Ali allegedly involved in the case scandal why is it taking so long to investigate police officers who mistreated victims by NOT listening to them, also is anything being done about the laptops that went missing this is one BIG WHITEWASH still many things not known

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      • Was PC Ali about to drop someone in it?? Someone with very strong connections in Rotherham?? Is there a connection between the killer of this officer and the person with strong connections in Rotherham?? From what we know, I wouldn’t put it past any of them!!

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    • Inquests are the responsibility of Coroners alone. It appears they get very annoyed of anyone interferes with their responsibilities.

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  8. Janet Green other parties won’t tell you anything because they don’t care about the people in the borough and if Alan Billings can do nothing about inquests especially if it involves a police officer what is his job.
    As for picking on UKIP are you happy the way the Sheffield city region issue was handled

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    • Have you not read nor comprehended what is written above?

      To the best of my knowledge, a Police and Crime Commissioner has absolutely no involvement in the appointment, management, performance monitoring, disciplinary proceedings etc etc etc of a Coroner, who is responsible for inquests. In fact, I’ve just done a quick google search and I can’t find a single document where they are both mentioned! But you may know better.

      However, what my search revealed is that, whereas Coroners have been totally and utterly independent, there is now a Chief Coroner, His Honour Judge Peter Thornton QC, whose responsibilities include to “Keep a register of coroner investigations lasting more than 12 months and take steps to reduce unnecessary delays.”. Maybe you should write to him? You can read more and find the contact details at:
      https://www.judiciary.gov.uk/related-offices-and-bodies/office-chief-coroner/

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  9. Janet you seem to get on the defensive when Labour are criticised and as for not reading what is posted you did not answer the part about the Sheffield city region, and personally I believe the PCC job should be done away with and we go back to the local authority dealing with police matters making the police force concerned more accountable to the people. Petulant children come to mind when I read some of the things put on here we all have our different views and should respect others views but making threats is what you seem to be all about if you cannot accept a debate about something then why do you bother putting anything on here

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  10. “personally I believe the PCC job should be done away with and we go back to the local authority dealing with police matters making the police force concerned more accountable to the people.”

    I don’t know, it didn’t work so well last time, did it? If we were to go down that route it would need far more scrutiny than the old Police & Crime Panel had, and the make up of the panel should be more carefully balanced, and include victims of crime so that neither the Council nor the Police force concerned have undue influence over decision making. It should be chaired by neither a Councillor or an acting or retired Police officer. A barrister would be better, less likely to turn a blind eye to wrongdoing by Police officers, but with the legal knowledge required to run the panel effectively. Members of the panel who are also serving Police officers or Councillors should not receive any additional allowances for this role beyond reasonable expenses. All members of the panel should be subject to strict rules and regulations regarding their position on the panel.

    But I agree, the role of PCC is a non job, dreamed up solely to create the illusion of scrutiny. Of which there is not much, currently.

    I recall that the cost of the old PCPs was also used as a factor in deciding to do away with them. How much did the old PCPs cost and how much does the role of PCC cost? Not just his wages, but the running costs, Assistant PCC wages etc? Has there really been that much of a financial saving, and has that saving been worth it?

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