ig girls defend smaller girls.
Child sexual abuse has never been a higher police priority. But too many rapists avoid justice, argues former detective Margaret Oliver....
It wasn't long before I was working on rapes, domestic abuse and child protection jobs - the kind of cases that other officers working in Moss Side generally didn't want to do. And I was good at them. But if you won the trust of vulnerable girls who'd been through hell, you had to deliver - and that was heavily dependent on the appetite of people at the top to investigate these crimes.
Years before I worked on a scoping exercise - a full-blown major incident team investigation which had identified considerable numbers of child abusers in south Manchester. I'd listened to girls who had been drugged so they couldn't move before they were violently raped - but the investigation was closed down. A few people were warned under the Child Abduction Act but no-one was charged.
I was sickened then and still feel angry now when I think back to that case. Vulnerable people were reaching out, desperate to secure justice, and we were letting them down. I'd sworn an oath to uphold the law and ensure "equal respect to all people" when I joined the police. Those words seemed meaningless now.
Unless we started showing respect to young girls from poorer areas, we were never going to win their trust. When Greater Manchester Police's failings in dealing with child abuse were later laid bare in a series of damning reports, one police officer gave a radio interview in which he admitted that officers referred to the girls as "scrubbers" and child prostitutes.
That was putting it lightly. I'd heard worse from other officers. There was no real effort to win their trust and a staggering lack of empathy
Thus one female voice of sanity and civilization in a sea of semen. What does this indicate? That the male coppers were as contemptuous of the non-virginal teenage female as the Muslim groomers. It may also indicate that the line 'we don't want to be accused of Islamophobia' showed not that people are anxious not to be accused of Islamophobia but that the possibility is a perfect excuse for doing little or nothing about something you don't really think matters.