No-one disciplined over failures that left girl to be abused by convicted sex offender step-father
- Credit: PA
No-one has been disciplined or sacked over a series of failures that left a vulnerable girl to be abused by a convicted sex offender who was in a relationship with her mother for almost a decade, it has emerged.
The news came as a former care minister raised concerns that the failure of agencies to share vital information, identified by a serious case review, was a 'common thread' that ran through too many investigations into previous similar cases.
As well as naivety about sex offenders, the report found nine other systemic factors that compounded the vulnerability of the girl, known as Child P.
It identified nine missed opportunities over seven years, including some in the days after the girl first reported an assault in October 2014, to reduce the risk of sexual abuse.
However, the 55-page report did not lay the blame at the door of any individuals, and, as well as making 17 recommendations, it identified a number of improvements that had been made.
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A spokesman for Norfolk County Council said: 'The report acknowledges this was a very complex case, with a failure to join up found across a number of agencies including GPs, schools, school nursing, the Family Focus services and children's social care.
'The report found there was a collective responsibility with no one individual to blame, and that a number of improvements have already been put in place.'
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North Norfolk MP and former minister Norman Lamb said: 'The depressing truth is that whenever investigations of this sort take place, the common thread running through them tends to be a failure of communication, and to not share vital information that could have kept someone safe.
'My hope is that this time the lessons are learned, and that in a year's time we can say children are now safer, but we have to have a learning culture where organisations are really prepared to confront where problems have occurred.'
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