Safe and Sound Echo Police Concerns

11 February 2019

A local charity which supports victims of child sexual exploitation and abuse across the county has backed concerns from Derbyshire police about the use of tinted windows in taxis.

Erewash Borough Council is consulting about the current regulations which prevents hackney and private hire vehicles from having tinted windows.

This follows a petition from some local drivers who want the council regulations changed – claiming that they are out of pocket by having to adapt tinted windscreens and windows on new vehicles fitted with the features.

Derbyshire police have responded to the consultation highlighting reports of taxis being used for the transportation of children at risk of exploitation to locations where they are abused.

Catherine Arkley is chair of Safe and Sound which is a highly-regarded local charity that specialises in tackling child sexual exploitation and abuse through individual support for children and young people and community awareness programmes across Derbyshire.

She said: “We applaud Derbyshire police for raising this issue through this consultation and 100% echo their concerns on this issue.

“Safe and Sound have worked with taxi drivers in the past to raise awareness of child sexual exploitation and abuse so that they know where to go to report any concerns or are asked to do something that they are not comfortable with.

“We recommend that all agencies work on an ongoing basis with our local taxi drivers to identify potential perpetrators and victims of sexual exploitation and encourage information sharing.

“This joined up approach is vital to better protect vulnerable children and young people in our local communities.

“Ideally, we would advocate that all taxis should have completely clear windows to make it easier for the police to better identify and act upon potential dangers involving children and young people at risk of exploitation.

“At the very least, there needs to be consistent policies amongst local councils who regulate these vehicles to disrupt the criminal activity that damages so many young lives in our local communities.

“I hope that Erewash Borough Council takes these potential dangers into consideration when they decide on their course of action in this matter.”

Notes to the editor:

For more information please contact Sarah Jenkin-Jones, JJPR, Tel: 01332 515102/07951 945665; [email protected]