Dr Billings Responds To CSE Report

“The report that some Conservative members of Rotherham Borough council have produced to support a resolution they are putting to the November council meeting is an extraordinary mix of vagueness and lack of knowledge about what the police and local authority are doing.

“There are also untruths.

“It is not true to say that neither the council nor the police have apologised to those victims of child sexual exploitation that were the subject of the 2014 Jay Report.

The Leader of the council apologised when he became Leader.

“South Yorkshire police have apologised for that time and have been determined to learn from past mistakes.

“The authors say they have supplied information to the police that has not been acted on.

“This is not true.

“Every piece of information they supplied has been followed up, but most of it was so vague that little could be done with it.

“The only hard evidence was a car registration number, but there is no vehicle with that number.

“Most of the information provided was vague or speculative – yet valuable police time was spent testing it out.

“They say that the council and police believe CSE is only in the past.

“This is untrue.

“The non-recent cases of CSE – those identified by Professor Jay – are dealt with by the National Crime Agency (NCA), who have 200 detectives working on them.

“Recent CSE cases are dealt with by South Yorkshire police who currently have 35 active cases with 29 suspects arrested.

“I fund Independent Sexual Violence Advisers who support both non-recent and recent CSE victims for as long as they need help.

“The councillors are dismissive of those who inspect the council and the police regularly.

“But the 2017 and 2020 Ofsted reports noted the way the council and police worked in partnership to safeguard the children of Rotherham.

“Council officers and the police are located together in Riverside, on Main Street, and Ofsted were clear that Rotherham children are well protected as a result.

“I am surprised that the councillors seem to know so little about the work that is being done by either the NCA or the police.

“I receive regular updates on CSE and Child Criminal Exploitation (CCE) from the Rotherham district commander every quarter at my Public Accountability Board, where I hold the force to account.

“This is held in public and the reports are on the PCC website.

“There is detailed information on a regular basis, openness and transparency, and the councillors are welcome to speak to me about any of the issues that concern them at any time.”