If there is one major lesson that everyone needs to take from the Rotherham scandal, it is this one. The most essential action for anyone working on a report on child exploitation or abuse is to keep copies of your work away from your office and home.

In that case, should anyone try to raid either one and take away or destroy evidence, transcripts, reports, drafts, etc., you have your copies safely stored.

Rotherham council staff ‘seized files and wiped computers to cover up scale of child sex grooming’

  • Council officials ‘ordered raid on youth service ahead of 2000 report’
  • ‘Seized nothing but details of abuse victims, alleged attackers and cases’

Imagine if this social worker had done this in 2002!

I’m not blaming her, because it’s clear she hadn’t the faintest clue she was working in a vile, corrupt system. She was doing her work properly. But she was naive. Oh, how sad.

In 2002 high profile personnel at Rotherham Council ordered a raid on Risky Business, Rotherham council’s specialist youth service, which offered one-to-one help and support to vulnerable teenage girls, ahead of the findings of a draft report, according to the Times.

The raid was to remove case files and wipe computer records detailing the scale and severity of the town’s sex-grooming crisis, sources told The Times.

It took place shortly after senior police and council staff became aware of the contents of the draft report of a 2000-01 research project that found evidence of a hidden child sex abuse scandal.

Files which revealed victims, offenders and how individual cases were handled by the child-protection authorities were removed.

The draft report was intended to form part of a national Home Office pilot project on child sexual exploitation in several English towns. The chapter on Rotherham remains unpublished to this day.

A researcher claims she refused to follow order by senior council officials instructing her to “remove or rewrite” sections of the report, which criticised the repeated failure of police and social services to protect children from identified abusers of Pakistani origin.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/active/11062758/Scandal-hit-Rotherham-deleted-abuse-files.html

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A former social worker at Rotherham Council has accused the council of deliberately under-reporting the number of children at risk to meet targets, while the children themselves were overlooked.

Speaking anonymously to BBC News, she said some victims were not officially registered and just allowed to disappear.

http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-england-28962233

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It emerged that there had been three previous reports into the problem which had been suppressed or ignored by officials, either because they did not like or did not believe the findings.
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The report said failures of the political and officer leadership of Rotherham council over the first 12 years she looked at were blatant, as the seriousness of the problem was underplayed by senior managers and was not seen as a priority by South Yorkshire police. Jay said police “regarded many child victims with contempt”.

These failures occured despite three reports between 2002 and 2006 “which could not have been clearer in the description of the situation in Rotherham”.

She said the first of these reports was “effectively suppressed” because senior officers did not believe the data. The other two were ignored, she added.

http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/aug/26/rotherham-children-sexually-abused-report

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The other thing that I don’t understand is just how naive are these social workers when their reports are suppressed? I mean, if their superiors steal their data and destroy it, that’s one thing, it’s gone. But if they simply suppress the report, meaning discard it and shelf it, then the social worker simply forgets about the issue as well? Have they never heard of whistle blowing? Going to politicians, charities, the media?

I’m sorry, but it seems such a social worker is more interested in their career than in the safe guarding of children.

What disgusting people.

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