There has been much heated debate about whether or not Tommy Robinson should have a special dispensation to allow him to become a UKIP member should he wish. After Tommy was arrested in Leeds, Gerard Batten went on the first protest march and has subsequently spoken at further rallies. This has also provoked much controversy amongst members. When Tommy won his appeal against contempt of court and was released on bail pending a retrial, I consider this demonstrated that UKIP was right to join in the protest – on this occasion.

After a history which is chequered to say the least, Tommy took up his sword against the scandal of grooming gangs in Britain, almost all of whom are of Pakistani origin and also involved in drug dealing. As recently as last Saturday the Mail featured an horrific case, taken up by Baroness Cox; a young girl was lured and abducted outside her local Tesco store – TWELVE years ago. The litany of police failure to act is depressingly familiar.

Although some of the vulnerable girls targeted by grooming gangs have been as young as eleven and therefore plainly children, most are in their early teens; vile as these gang rapes are, I don’t personally regard the rapists’ criminal acts as ‘child sexual exploitation’ where the girls are post puberty, but the law takes a different view – and rape is a crime at any age. So why has it been brushed aside for decades?

The failure of our justice system is not confined to grooming gangs. Scarcely a week passes without the historic child sex abuse (CSA) by Catholic priests rearing its ugly head. If it’s not that, it’s abuse in children’s homes and who can forget the posthumous revelations about Jimmy Savile or Cyril Smith.

Last week, in the space of 24 hours between one afternoon and the next I was told the following harrowing tales of historic child abuse:

A five year old girl was sexually abused by a neighbour, she told her mother, her mother went to the police. The police… did nothing!

Piecing together events and conversations with her grandmother, a saleswoman had realised that an elderly relative, now deceased, had been abused by someone within the family. The response to speaking out had been to condemn her as lying and therefore mentally ill; she was given the now notorious electric shock treatment that was fashionable at the time.

Sexual abuse by both parents – ‘I got that, my brother got the beatings.’ This individual’s spouse knew someone who had been taken into care for CSA, then abused again in the care system. Could that be Melanie Shaw? One can hope, but sadly I am sure that Melanie is not the only one.

These were not snippets gleaned from social media or office gossip, nor life stories from a therapy group. These were chance face to face conversations that only happened because I too have recently ‘come out ’ about childhood abuse. I have never known a mother’s love, the woman that gave birth to me subjected me to emotional and mental abuse and hated me to the end of her life. Thankfully I was never sexually abused but CSA is in the news so often that it and the general term ‘child abuse’ have become virtually synonymous. Well, last week, someone up there was trying to tell me I have a job to do.

The grooming gangs are criminals. Drug dealers, pimps and rapists. Not acting for fear of offending decent citizens of the same religion and ethnicity as them is cowardly and wrong. UKIP is right to speak out and not just on the abduction and abuse of mainly white girls by the gangs. FGM, duping your daughter into going on ‘holiday’ for mutilation or a forced marriage – both child abuse. ‘Honour’ killing is murder. An acid attack is surely grievous bodily harm. All crimes which should be prosecuted.

Then there is what you might call abuse by ‘indigenous’ criminals. I first came across Melanie Shaw at the ‘Tommy’ rallies, if she really is imprisoned on rigged charges to gag her for whistleblowing over perverts in high places, linked to the Beechwood children’s home in Nottingham, shouldn’t UKIP look at her case too? MPs, councillors, police inspectors, ‘celebrities’ – there should be no stone under which child abusing low life can hide from justice.

UKIP must speak out to make it plain that it abhors these crimes and will fight for justice for abused children wherever the abuse occurs, not just in ethnic communities.

UKIP should speak out loud and clear about ALL failure to investigate allegations of child abuse, child sexual abuse and child sexual exploitation due to vested interests or fear of racism accusations.

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