Agenda and minutes

Children's Commissioner's Takeover Challenge, Overview and Scrutiny Management Board - Thursday 12 March 2020 5.00 p.m.

Venue: Council Chamber - Rotherham Town Hall, Moorgate Street, Rotherham, South Yorkshire S60 2TH. View directions

Contact: James McLaughlin, Head of Democratic Services  The webcast can be viewed at

No. Item


Welcome from Councillor Steele, Chair of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Board


Councillor Steele welcomed everyone to the special meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Board which was once again supporting the Children’s Commissioner’s Takeover Challenge (CCTOC) by working with Rotherham Youth Cabinet (RYC).  It was positive to have so many young people there, with many new faces who Members had not worked with before.


Apologies for Absence


To receive the apologies of any Member who is unable to attend the meeting.


Apologies for absence were received from:-


Councillors Allen, Beck, Hoddinott, Lelliott and Watson


Haider Ashiq, Haleema Mubash-Shirah, Aaban Shah and Alex White (Rotherham Youth Cabinet)


Danielle Spencer (SYP), Pepe Di’Iasio, Sally Hodges and Tom Smith (RMBC)


Response to Recommendations from Children's Commissioner Takeover Challenge Spotlight Review on Young Carers


The formal response to recommendations made at the Children’s Commissioner’s Takeover Challenge in 2019 and progress to date will be presented.


The Chair reported that this agenda item had been deferred until either June or July 2020.



Amaan Saqlain from Rotherham Youth Cabinet assumed the chair of the meeting.




Introduction and presentation from Rotherham Youth Cabinet - Hate Crime


A presentation to introduce Rotherham Youth Cabinet and to set the context for the choice of hate crime as the theme for the Children’s Commissioner’s Takeover Challenge.


Josie and Sam from Rotherham Youth Cabinet (RYC) provided a short introduction about the group.  It was comprised of young people aged 11-18 years old who lived or studied in Rotherham. They provided a voice for young people to represent them in the community and felt passionate about the issues facing young people.    Their aim was to work around these issues to improve the lives of each and every individual young person. The theme of hate crime had been chosen by RYC as it had emerged in the top three issues following the “Make Your Mark” consultation with young people.


Question and Answer Session with Officers and Partners


1 Had any of you ever been the victim of a hate incident or hate crime and how was it dealt with?


Three of the witnesses related personal experiences of being a victim of a hate crime/incident.  One had reported it to South Yorkshire Police (SYP) who had taken it seriously and dealt with it but without a resolution at that time.  Another had experienced hate incidents a number of times, especially cyber-crime through emails, which the police had been dealing with and actively trying to resolve. Young people were advised to report it if they were being targeted.  The third had been a few years ago and the incident had been dealt with through a local resolution as it had been fairly low level and a case of needing to educate the person rather than real maliciousness.


In terms of how police officers would deal with hate crimes against themselves, it would still be a victim led process as with members of the public but incidents would be dealt with accordingly.  Some might be low level, for example if the perpetrator was drunk with no real meaning behind it but in other cases where officers were racially abused or abused by their sexuality, that would be taken further and the hate element included and taken into consideration.   Offences would be dealt by whichever means to bring them to a satisfactory conclusion.


2 How quickly would there be a response from South Yorkshire Police to a victim when an incident had been reported and what was done to keep people in the loop about what was happening whilst a hate crime/incident was being investigated?


SYP hoped to respond very quickly and the protocol called for a response within 24 hours, although that was not always possible.  An incident log would be created, the incident allocated to an officer and a plan agreed with the victim in terms of the frequency for contacting them about what was happening, which varied greatly from person to person.


Reassurance was given that it was viewed as serious and a high level priority, as a joint partnership issue.  Part of the performance dashboard in relation to preventing hate crime in Rotherham showed that numbers reported increased following a drive to encourage reporting.  This was good but people needed to see that something was being done about it, such as finding the perpetrators and getting them in the Criminal Justice System if required.


3a What training was in place for Police Officers so they understood all the issues involved so they were effective in recording and handling cases?


All new police officers received specific input on hate crime awareness and there was a lot more to it than people tended to think. The Hate Crime Coordinator delivered some officer training.  Refreshers were also in place for long standing officers.  Within RMBC it was a similar approach and a corporate process had been put in place for staff to report incidents, either experienced themselves or if victims  ...  view the full minutes text for item 158.


Date and time of next meeting


The next meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Board will be held on 18 March 2020 at 11a.m at Rotherham Town Hall.




That the next meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Management Board be held on Wednesday 18 March 2020, commencing at 11.00 a.m.