A CANDIDATE in the running to become South Yorkshire’s first Police and Crime Commissioner has pledged more resources to tackle the sexual exploitation of children if elected.
Coun Shaun Wright, Labour candidate spoke out in the wake of the publication of confidential reports about the issue in South Yorkshire.
The reports revealed that authorities, including South Yorkshire Police, have known about gangs grooming vulnerable young girls for sex for a decade but few prosecutions had resulted.
Coun Wright has also pledged his support to the Barnardo’s Cut Them Free campaign.
The campaign proposes an anti-child sexual exploitation action list for police forces in England and Wales, highlighting key improvements that would help identify and support victims who have been abused, protect young people at risk and allow the prosecution of abusers.
Coun Wright said: “I will ensure greater priority is given to the prevention of the most heinous crimes against our children and thus help to safeguard our children from the evil cowards who carry out these awful crimes.
“As someone who has worked with children’s safeguarding professionals in the roles of magistrate, councillor, school governor and children’s charity trustee, you can rest assured of my unfailing commitment to meet this challenge head on.”