We the British People Request a Public Inquiry into Grooming Gangs

The Home Secretary said what happened to victims of child sexual exploitation gangs was “one of the biggest stains on our country’s conscience.” Last year local authorities identified 18,700 suspected victims of child sexual exploitation. We want an independent public inquiry into Grooming Gangs.

This petition closed on 5 Feb 2021 with 31,211 signatures


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Recent Documents related to We the British People Request a Public Inquiry into Grooming Gangs

1. Group based child sexual exploitation characteristics of offending
15/12/2020 - Home Office
- View source

Found: Characteristics of group - based child sexual exploitation in the community Literature review

2. Group based child sexual exploitation characteristics of offending
15/12/2020 - Home Office
- View source

Found: Group - based Child Sexual Exploitation Characteristics of Offending December 2020

3. The Children's Society - written evidence
18/04/2018 - Inquiry: Policing for the future - Home Affairs Committee
- View source

Found: children and young people who are at risk of exploitation or harm, living in care or let down by the systems

4. Tackling Child Sexual Abuse Strategy
22/01/2021 - Home Office
- View source

Found: Tackling Child Sexual Abuse Strategy 20211ContentsHome Secretary Foreword 3Executive Summary 5Objective

5. The Children's Society - written evidence
16/10/2018 - Inquiry: Modern slavery - Home Affairs Committee
- View source

Found: supported 104 children and young people who have been victims of human trafficking. Here are some of the key

Latest Documents
Recent Speeches related to We the British People Request a Public Inquiry into Grooming Gangs

1. Grooming Gangs
03/02/2021 - Commons Chamber

1: considered e-petitions 300239 and 327566 relating to grooming gangs.I would like to thank the 131,625 people - Speech Link

2. Grooming Gangs
14/05/2019 - Grand Committee

1: prevention of grooming gangs in Rotherham and elsewhere; and what assistance they have offered to victims and their - Speech Link
2: sufficient resources to support victims and survivors. Yet still, in October last year, Rotherham Abuse Counselling - Speech Link

3. Operation Augusta
05/02/2020 - Westminster Hall

1: story of the gross failure of public policy, and the implementation of public policy, to protect vulnerable - Speech Link
2: have done that. The awful thing is that, for the last 50 years, many of the children who have been abused - Speech Link

4. Group-based Child Sexual Exploitation
15/12/2020 - Written Statements

1: group-based child sexual exploitation, which was prompted by high-profile cases of sexual grooming in towns - Speech Link

5. Child Sexual Exploitation Victims: Criminal Records
19/03/2019 - Commons Chamber

1: that the Government want all victims and survivors of sexual abuse and exploitation to feel that they can - Speech Link
2: in order to protect other victims and survivors of child sexual exploitation. In that instance, we discussed - Speech Link

6. Oral Answers to Questions
03/12/2018 - Commons Chamber

1: artificial intelligence product to detect online grooming, which will be sent out licence-free for all technology - Speech Link
2: artificial intelligence product that will detect online grooming; that is the intention. The technology showed - Speech Link
3: model to reduce youth violence. A key aspect of the public health approach is cross-departmental working, - Speech Link
4: carefully at this public health approach, which is why I have talked of it at length in the last couple of months - Speech Link
5: does the Home Secretary agree that the delays by Telford and Wrekin Council in setting up an independent - Speech Link

7. Child Sexual Exploitation and Consent to Sexual Intercourse
22/05/2018 - Westminster Hall

1: has considered the matter of child sexual exploitation and consent to sexual intercourse.It is a - Speech Link

8. Exploitation of Missing Looked-after Children
23/10/2019 - Westminster Hall

1: House has considered the matter of sexual and criminal exploitation of missing looked after children.It - Speech Link

9. Modern Slavery Act 2015
26/10/2017 - Commons Chamber

1: to the Government’s mechanism for identifying victims—the national referral mechanism—rise year on year - Speech Link

10. County Lines Exploitation: London
17/01/2018 - Westminster Hall

1: That this House has considered county lines exploitation in London.It is a pleasure to serve under - Speech Link
2: some of our children are being coerced into those gangs? Is she pleased, as I am, that the modern day slavery - Speech Link

Latest Speeches
Recent Questions related to We the British People Request a Public Inquiry into Grooming Gangs
1. Offences against Children
asked by: Lord Blencathra
21/12/2017
... and (2) to potential victims of grooming in areas with a large Pakistani Muslim community on the risks of being targeted by such gangs; and what guidance they have given to police forces in areas where such gangs are known to operate to give priority to tackling such grooming.

Latest Questions

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Last year we learned 57 young girls were thought to have been exploited by up to 100 members of a grooming gang. There is clear public concern, and appear to be failings by Police, Social Services, Local Authorities and the CPS to protect the most vulnerable.

A public inquiry should answer: What happened? Who is to blame? What can be done to prevent this happening again? Is there a racial/religious element to this type of offending? How are survivors being supported and should more be done?


Top 50 Constituencies by Number of Signatures

5,695 signatures - 18.0% of total

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Government Response

The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse is already examining institutional responses to sexual exploitation by organised networks. The Home Office also intends to publish a paper on this issue


Child sexual abuse and exploitation is a despicable crime, and cases of child sexual exploitation perpetrated by groups have had devastating impacts on individuals and communities. 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. The Government is committed to keeping children and young people safe from all forms of abuse, and to support victims and survivors to rebuild their lives.

In 2015, the Government established the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse with wide-ranging terms of reference to consider the extent to which institutions in England and Wales have failed in their duty to protect children from sexual abuse and exploitation.

The Inquiry is well underway and as part of its work programme, is already investigating the current nature and extent of, and institutional responses to, the sexual exploitation of children by organised networks. This investigation is focusing on six separate geographic areas (St Helens, Tower Hamlets, Swansea, Durham, Bristol and Warwickshire), representing a range of sizes, demographics and institutional practices. The investigation aims to assess the extent to which authorities have learned lessons from recent high-profile cases, examine what went wrong and why, and challenge the institutions responsible.

The Inquiry recently held two weeks of public hearings from 21 September to 2 October 2020. Evidence was heard from a range of witnesses, including victims and survivors of child sexual exploitation and representatives of police forces, local authorities, Government departments and charities. Evidence was sought on a range of topics, including the investigation’s eight key themes: CSE problem profiling and the disruption of offenders, empathy and concerns for child victims, risk assessment and protection from harm, missing children, return home interviews and looked-after children, male victims, children with a disability, partnership working and audit, review and performance improvement.

The Inquiry will publish a report of its investigation, setting out its conclusions on institutional failings, lessons learnt, and identifying practical recommendations for change to improve the prevention of child sexual abuse and exploitation in the future. The Government welcome the Inquiry’s scrutiny in these important issues and will carefully consider its recommendations.

Home Office officials have also been pursuing work on a number of fronts to improve our understanding of the characteristics of group-based child sexual exploitation, considering the broadest range of evidence sources and applying due scrutiny to existing research. This work has included completing an assessment of relevant literature, conducting interviews with police officers about recent investigations, and using experiential data analysis.

The Government set out on 19 May its intention to publish a paper on group-based child sexual exploitation by the end of this year, bringing together insights from the Home Office’s own work and other sources of research and evidence. We intend this paper to present the available evidence on the characteristics of this form of offending, in order to help agencies learn lessons from the past to tackle group-based offending and safeguard vulnerable children. This paper is currently being scrutinised by an External Reference Group, to provide constructive challenge on this complex issue. The Group is comprised of experts from academia and research, victims’ groups, third sector organisations, parliamentarians and representatives of the criminal justice system.

In order to keep up with the fast-evolving threat, we have also committed to publish a first of its kind national strategy on tackling all forms of child sexual abuse. The strategy will outline our long-term ambition to drive a whole system response to tackle this heinous crime. The Tackling Child Sexual Abuse Strategy will set out how we will work across sectors - including government, law enforcement, safeguarding partners and industry - to root out and prevent offending, and help victims and survivors to rebuild their lives.

Home Office


MPs spoken contributions during 3 Feb 2021 petition debate