Published: Wednesday, 22nd June 2022

Following publication of the independent review into historic Child Sexual Exploitation in Oldham, an extraordinary council meeting has been called to discuss all the issues raised in the report.

Residents and councillors will have the chance to ask questions and find out more information at the meeting on Monday, June 27. 

The independent review was undertaken by child protection specialist Malcolm Newsam CBE and former senior police officer Gary Ridgway. 

The review found:  

  • That some children had been failed by the agencies that were meant to protect them because child protection procedures had not been properly followed. 

  • There were serious failings in the handling of some cases, particularly of the victim, ‘Sophie’. 

  • There was no evidence either to suggest senior managers or councillors sought to cover-up the existence of CSE or the complexity involved in tackling perpetrators. Nor was there widespread CSE in residential settings, in shisha bars or in the local taxi trade. 

Councillor Amanda Chadderton, Leader of Oldham Council, said: “We accept all the findings of this independent report.  

“It highlights clear failings, where our services at the time were not good enough to protect vulnerable young people suffering the most awful abuse.  

“For that I am deeply sorry. I can never fully understand what those girls went through, and I also know that an apology now will never make up for what happened in the past.   

“I do hope, however, to offer some reassurance that, as a Council, we haven’t stood still since the time period the review refers to.   

“We have learned from reports carried out in other towns and cities across the country, and from changes in national guidance, and have changed the way we do things as a result. The way we work has already moved on immeasurably.   

“That said, we are not complacent. We can and will improve further, wherever we need to.”  

The extraordinary council meeting will be held at 6pm in the council chamber at the Civic Centre. It will also be screened on the council’s website. 

Anyone who would like to send in a question can do so via https://bit.ly/2FYEdGT 

The deadline for submissions is 12pm on Sunday, June 26. 

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