A Doncaster child services boss, who came under fire for her role at Rotherham council during a time when widespread child sexual exploitation was taking place, has been cleared of any wrongdoing.
Jackie Wilson, who was responsible for safeguarding children in Rotherham between 2002-2007, has been cleared by an independent investigation of any personal responsibility for the failings of her former employer to tackle child sexual exploitation (CSE).
Following her time at Rotherham council Mrs Wilson was employed as assistant director of children’s services at Doncaster council is now Director of Transformation at the newly-formed Doncaster Children’s Services Trust.
Doncaster Council chief executive Jo Miller confirmed the findings of the investigation to a meeting of the full council yesterday although she did not refer to Mrs Wilson by name.
Addressing the borough’s councillors yesterday Ms Miller said: “The investigation that we commissioned has found that there is no evidence to support allegations that this staff member was involved in a cover up of CSE, nor that she should be singled out as being uniquely culpable for the failings identified in the Professor Jay report.
“That is not to say that multi-agency arrangements in place at that time to tackle CSE were working as well as they could or should have done in Rotherham – clearly they were not.”
“I will conclude in saying that the employee concerned has the full support of Doncaster Children’s Services Trust in her role helping to transform children’s social care.
“It is the job of this Council and the Trust and the wider Children’s Safeguarding system to ensure that children’s social care services are the best they can be for all of our children and families.
Mrs Wilson was interviewed by Professor Jay in the course of compiling her report.
Its principle finding, that Rotherham Council failed to protect 1,400 children from abuse, led to calls for local authorities to investigate staff mentioned in the report.
The investigation into Mrs Wilson reviewed the Jay report and the later Casey report into Rotherham Council as well as allegations in the media but found no evidence to support wrongdoing.
It also found she performed her job ‘well’ while working for Doncaster Council and had been employed properly.