South Yorkshire hotels allowing men to check into rooms with teenage girls

Malanie PalinMalanie Palin
Malanie Palin
A police operation found hotels in South Yorkshire are still allowing men to check into rooms with teenage girls despite the child sexual exploitation scandal.

Hotels across the county have received training on how to spot the signs of potential child sexual exploitation, but spot checks last week found some in Rotherham, Barnsley and Doncaster still willing to take bookings from men attempting to check in with teenage girls.

Undercover police officers and teenage cadets attempted to book into five hotels in Sheffield but on each occasion staff refused to check them in.

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In Rotherham, two hotels failed the test, along with one in Barnsley and six in Doncaster.

Hotels received training after the scale of child sexual exploitation in Rotherham was laid bare in an independent report published in 2014, which found that between 1997 and 2013 around 1,400 children were abused by men of largely Pakistani heritage while authorities failed to act.

Staff were taught to identify potential victims and what to do.

The spot checks were carried out last week in the run up to national Child Sexual Exploitation awareness day on Saturday.

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Detective Chief Inspector Melanie Palin, South Yorkshire Police's lead officer for child sexual exploitation said: “Overall, the operations across our region went very well and I am grateful to the officers and young cadets who gave up their time to take part in this exercise.

“Operations like this are massively important - we work closely with hospitality and other industries to make sure as many people as possible have the necessary training to spot potential signs of child sexual exploitation and know how to take action to safeguard children.

“This is part of our ongoing commitment to tackling this crime, working in partnership with businesses, agencies, communities and the wider public to protect and safeguard our young people from harm.

“While there has been concerted and targeted activity over the last week in the run-up to CSE Awareness Day, this is a continuous programme of activity and similar operations will be run in the future.”