Cleveland County Council Response to the Cleveland Child Abuse Scandal 1987, 1988

cleveland imagesCleveland Council have released useful details of two pages of Minutes[1] dated 14th September 1988, from the Social Services Committee (SSC) of the now abolished County Council of Cleveland. This was in response to a Freedom of Information Request [2], which is still ongoing.

The minutes are sufficient to get a partial outline of the Council response to the Public Inquiry by Elizabeth Butler-Sloss QC and her Inquiry Report [5] into the child abuse.

The Butler Sloss Report was formally received by the Social Services Committee on 14th September 1988, the report having been previously circulated to members.

It appears the Council set up a Committee called the Cleveland Child Abuse Working Party or Child Abuse Working Party, which considered the relevant findings and Recommendations of Butler Sloss Inquiry Report and considered modification to the Councils future practices and procedures.

The Councils Child Abuse Working Party Report was considered by two committees, firstly the Policy and Finance Committee and then the Social Services Committee. The Chief Executive and Treasurer had written a very short Report which is enclosed in the minutes. It is unclear (to me) whether the Policy and Finance Minute that is said to be attached is included as part of the short report or if it is not attached to the part published.

The Chief Executive and Treasurers report skims over several items – that bridges were being built between the Council and parents, contacts being made with other organisations to ensure proper child abuse prevention, a seminar for Council inter departmental working for those involved in child abuse prevention, production of leaflets and publications to cover child protection work, and decisions still to be made with regard to Butler Sloss recommendations.

A Special Meeting of the Social Services Committee on October 4th 1988 was arranged to discuss the recommendations of the Working Party Report.

The Press and Public were then asked to leave the meeting so that the Social Services Committee could discuss individuals.

The information released by Cleveland Council then runs out, although there is plainly more relevant information which should have already been provided to the FOI Request.

At this stage I have therefore asked for a copy of the Child Abuse Working Party Report and any more information on the Working Party.

Butler Sloss’s judicial inquiry found that the pediatricians had “acted properly” and the report supported the manner in which they had applied the reflex anal dilatation test [4]. Sadly the Butler Sloss report [5] is not yet digitally available free and so yet again the lessons of the past are not properly learned due to the relative unavailability of a Public Inquiry report which has been paid for by taxpayers. Childrens Webmag have a Digest of the Butler Sloss Report by Robert Shaw [3].

The Report deals with the relationship between many of the different parties, but it does not appear to ascertain which children were actually abused. Therefore the book Unofficial Secrets by Beatrix Campbell is definitely worth a read. The details are on my post on Books on Child Abuse [7] .

beatrix 61u35c3B1DL._SL500_SY300_

Finally although not directly connected to Cleveland Scandal,  Elizabeth Butler Sloss, now a Dame, is the sister of Michael Havers who whilst Attorney General  did not prosecute Peter Hayman and others after they were caught with child pornography.  He is thought to have been extremely lenient on paedophiles. That Elizabeth Butler Sloss was Michael Havers sister, I found out from this article on Elizabeth Butler Sloss’s husband hiring prostitutes in Kenya. He incidentally was a former Midlands Circuit Judge before  moving to the High Court in Kenya. Oh what a jolly justice system we have.

b_sloss prostitutes

Please note that victims of abuse may be triggered by reading this information. The Sanctuary for the Abused [A] has advice on how to prevent triggers.  National Association for People Abused in Childhood [B] has a freephone helpline and has links to local support groups. Other useful sites are One in Four [C] and Havoca [D]. Useful post on triggers [E] from SurvivorsJustice [F] blog.

Hyperlinks, Links and References

[1] FOI Reply from Middlesborough Council re Butler Sloss Report

[2] FOI Request re Council Response to Butler Sloss Report

[3] Childrenweb Digest of Butler Sloss Report

[4] Cleveland Child Abuse Scandal

[5] Inquiry into child abuse in Cleveland 1987 (1988) Report of the inquiry into child abuse in Cleveland 1987 Cm 412 London: Her Majesty’s Stationery Office 0 10 104122 5

[6] BMJ A

[7] Books on Child Abuse

[8] British Medical Journal Report on Cleveland Scandal

[9] Butler Sloss husband hires prostitutes in Kenya whilst she was doing Inquiry

[10] Pragnell Summary of what happened

[11] Spotlight on Abuse Cleveland category

[A] Sanctuary for the Abused


[C] One in Four

[D] Havoca

[E] SurvivorsJustice Triggers post

[F] SurvivorsJustice Blog

This is all written in good faith but if there is anything that needs to be corrected please email

cathyfox the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set you free


About cathy fox blog on Child Abuse

the truth will out, the truth will shout, the truth will set us free...
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3 Responses to Cleveland County Council Response to the Cleveland Child Abuse Scandal 1987, 1988

  1. pippakin says:

    Reblogged this on Thinking Out Loud and commented:
    One of the most concerning aspects of many inquiries and reports are the interconnections between investigators, judiciary and sometimes even of those being investigated. It reeks of conflict of interest and nothing ever seems to change.

  2. zoompad says:

    Ralph Underwager. I was hounded for years for talking about that filthy creep. Apparently I was being a nutter and a conspiracy theorist. WHY WAS HE CALLED AS EXPERT WITNESS BY BUTLER SLOSS?

  3. zoompad says:

    Oh and while I’m here, I was telling the truth about Staffordshire police being in charge of my mental health. I’m Sick of being called a liar/drama queen/conspiracy theorist/ect.

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