Submitted by Jonathan Wong on Wednesday 4th March 2020
Published on Thursday 5th March 2020
Current status: Closed
Closed: Saturday 5th September 2020
Release the Home Office's Grooming Gang Review in full
The Government is refusing to release official research on the characteristics of grooming gangs, claiming it is not in the “public interest”.
We, the British public, demand the release of the official research on grooming gangs undertaken by the Government in full.
It has been revealed earlier this year that an almost 19,000 suspected child sexual exploitation victims were identified by local authorities in just one year.
Sajid Javid promised the review as Home Secretary in July 2018, pledging that there would be “no no-go areas of inquiry”.
“I will not let cultural or political sensitivities get in the way of understanding the problem and doing something about it,” he said at the time.
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The Government responded to this petition on Tuesday 19th May 2020
Government intends to publish a paper on group-based child sexual exploitation this year, which will set out key findings of the Home Office’s work in this area and implications for policy.
Child sexual exploitation perpetrated by groups is a truly horrendous crime that shatters the lives of victims and their families. We have heard of truly shocking cases of vulnerable children being preyed upon by ruthless predators and failed by the state and those whose job it was to protect them.
These unthinkable crimes have had devastating impacts on towns and communities – leaving lasting scars that go beyond the direct victims, particularly where it has gone on for years.
This must never be allowed to happen again. This Government has made it our mission to protect the most vulnerable in our society, stamp out all forms of child sexual abuse offending, and support victims and survivors to rebuild their lives.
The Government will publish a paper into group-based child sexual exploitation in order to better understand the characteristics of group-based offending and help deliver justice for victims.
The paper, to be published later this year, will outline the insights gained from this work and focus on how agencies can learn lessons from the past to tackle group-based offending and safeguard vulnerable children.
The Home Office will set up an External Reference Group of experts to review the research before its publication.
The work was commissioned by the previous Home Secretary to better understand the scale and nature of group-based child sexual exploitation, including the characteristics of offenders, victims and the context in which these crimes are committed.
Last September, the Government announced an additional £30 million to take down the worst offenders and safeguard victims.
The Home Office will shortly publish the first of its kind cross-government Child Sexual Abuse Strategy to improve the UK’s response to tackling this abhorrent crime.
It will set out how we will work across all agencies – including government, law enforcement, safeguarding and industry – to stop offenders in their tracks, and to help victims and survivors rebuild their lives.
This is a revised response. The Petitions Committee requested a response which more directly addressed the request of the petition. You can find the original response towards the bottom of the petition page (https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/300239)
This petition has reached the threshold for a Parliamentary debate, but the debate has not yet been scheduled.
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