Imams and Community leaders respond following the sentencing of the Huddersfield grooming gang

Sixteen men were jailed for a total of 221 years as part of the grooming gang who abused 15 girls in and around Huddersfield between 2004 and 2011.

These acts have been committed by vile criminals who preyed on young girls and exploited them for their own gain. Unfortunately, this isn’t the first case of young girls being groomed and taken advantage off by gangs of men in communities across the UK (see our editorial piece on sexual exploitation from 2015 here). These horrible acts ruining the lives of so many young innocent people are happening in our neighbourhoods, as different communities across the UK, we need to work tirelessly to protect and safeguard the next generation.

We all know that these criminal acts are alien to the teachings of any religion or against any culture, these perpetrators have acted on the basis of their own twisted & horrible aims and gains. By ruining the lives of innocent young people, these individuals have brought shame on their families, communities and country.

Below are some examples of Imams and community leaders speaking out against the grooming and exploitation of young children in this country following the Huddersfield conviction

Imam Qari Asim from Makkah Mosque in Leeds, added further on what needs to be done to protect victims of such crimes and the joint responsibility of communities across the UK to prevent and protect those in our community.

If you see something not right,  don’t be afraid to report it. It does not mean that people have to become spies and whistle-blowers, rather good neighbours in order to protect their own families and communities’. 

But that responsibility cannot be limited to one single community. It’s the duty of every community to do everything they can to prevent abused young people. That’s all of us, that makes us united against sexual exploitation. We need to send out a loud and clear message that abuse and abusers will not be tolerated within any of our communities

Below is a detailed guide to Child Protection and Adult Safeguarding for Faith Based Establishments we developed with Birmingham Council in 2016, free for download.

Editorial piece by Imams Online Editor in Chief, Shaukat Warraich

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