Welcome to a more Autumnal week, as the slow grind of the vast machine that is the work mill winds back into action.

Following the wake of the Rotherham scandal, where thousands of children were abused and ignored by police and social work professionals for decades despite clear signs of child abuse, Hilary Willmer, a campaigner and chair of trustees at the charity Parents Against Child Sexual Exploitation (Pace) says that this kind of abuse is far more widespread than is being acknowledged by government. 

Having worked in Rotherham in the 90’s, Willmer explains that referrals were coming in from all over the country, but that the girls were laughed at, reports of the extent of the problem suppressed, with authorities even going so far as to say that these girls had “chosen this lifestyle to feed their drug habit”.

Our question this week then, is this: do you think Willmer is right and do we need to change the culture in the UK when it comes to understanding children?

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