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Child abuse Town hit by child sex scandals sees 117 cases of care kids reported missing

So years after a town is named and shamed, the same old problems are manifesting themselves. And when Anne Marie Waters sent Freedom of Information requests out to the various bodies, they mostly came back implying that no data was being aggregated, despite this being the main critique of the organisations tasked 4 years earlier of collecting such aggregated data.


Campaigners warn crucial lessons have not been learned in Rochdale, with authorities not acting quickly enough to keep youngsters safe

Children were reported missing from council care more than 100 times in a town dogged by child sex scandals.

Sunday People investigation reveals how, four years since a Parliamentary inquiry criticised child protection failures in Rochdale, 117 red flags were raised.

And a leading children’s charity warned lessons had not been learned – meaning vulnerable kids could still be in harm’s way.

Matthew Reed, chief executive of the Children’s Society said: “Children who go missing from care are extremely vulnerable, particularly to sexual exploitation.

“Yet in many cases the authorities fail to understand the risks they face early on and do not act quickly enough to keep them safe.”

Figures revealed under Freedom of Information laws show 117 cases were raised in Rochdale during the year to February.

Hundreds of kids went missing in other council areas, including 86 in Bristol, 113 in Bradford, and 32 in Peterborough.

Other councils contacted did not respond to a request for information.

They show children could still be at risk from dangerous predators, despite criticism of child protection measures.

As far back as 2012 an All Party Parliamentary Group report on child sex exploitation found shocking shortcomings in council care. 

It warned: “There is a scandal going on in England involving children missing from care – and until recent cases of child sexual exploitation in Rochdale and other places put the spotlight on this issue – it was going on pretty much unnoticed.

Contact Peter McLoughlin

Email pmclauth a t gmail . com

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