Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Blair minister Margaret Hodge; Margaret Oppenheimer; child abuse in Islington

Child abuse in Islington, London:

"Stories began to emerge: of sinister adults preying on children who were lured into private houses or abused in care homes, which were being used as under-age brothels. Davies and several other care workers became convinced a paedophile ring was at work in the area.

"In 1990 Davies's colleague, David Cofie, raised the issue at a forum of local residents. He also took his claims direct to Hodge, who was the local ward councillor. Davies asked for more resources to tackle the problem, but Hodge turned the request down...

"Even as they uncovered stories of children being taken away by adults on weekend trips to the country or being placed in homes with suspected abusers, Davies said her team's work was ignored...

"The final straw came when a seven-year-old boy was placed in a home run by someone she had already warned about. 'I remember seeing that child cowering in a corner inside that home,'"

Source: Paul Harris and Martin Bright investigated how a 12-year-old saga of child abuse and cover-ups returned to haunt Children's Minister Margaret Hodge, 6 July 2003.

http://observer.guardian.co.uk/children/story/0,12816,992458,00.html

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Mr R.

"A former deputy director of a children's home in Islington, north London has been charged with molesting young boys in Thailand...

"In the 1980s Mr R. was the deputy director of a children's home in Highbury, north London, run by Islington borough council.

"Allegations that boys in care homes in Islington were abused were not properly examined, according to an independent inquiry into child welfare in the borough...

"A boy who had been in his care in Islington told Sussex police that Mr R. had abused him. There was no corroborating evidence, however, and no prosecution was ever mounted.

Source: Telegraph 17 July 2005

Telegraph News London care home chief 'used games to lure Thai ...

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Margaret Hodge is one of Britain's better known Jewish MPs.

She was born in Egypt as Margaret Oppenheimer, the daughter of a millionaire German Jewish high-Tory steel trader and his Austrian Jewish wife.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Hodge

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"For much of the decade that Margaret Hodge led Islington council in north London she was known - without much affection - as Enver Hodge, with reference to the former dictator of Stalinist Albania."

Source: http://www.guardian.co.uk/guardianpolitics/story/0,,991080,00.html

"Mrs Hodge was in her final year at Islington when, on October 6 1992, under the headline The Scandal at the Heart of Child Care, London's Evening Standard newspaper alleged that young people in Islington care homes had "descended into a life of degradation and exploitation". It said suspected pimps were having sex with children and that youngsters in care were being seduced into drugs, homosexuality and prostitution.

"The Standard claimed that a 15-year-old girl entertained men in her room for cash. A 17-year-old girl was alleged to have brought a violent pimp, prostitute and drug dealer into an Islington unit for teenagers, where they gave her cannabis, ecstasy and cocaine.

"The paper described one care home where "pregnancies and miscarriages were routine, and police often arrested men, unofficially living there, on drugs and burglary offences".

Source: http://www.guardian.co.uk/guardianpolitics/story/0,,991080,00.html

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The Right Honourable Margaret Eve, Lady Hodge MBE was born on 8 September 1944.

Hodge is Labour Party member of Parliament for Barking.

She was the first Minister for Children appointed, by Tony Blair, in a newly created post within the Department for Education and Skills in 2003.

In 2003 she was involved in a controversy about press coverage of a man who accused her of being ultimately responsible for abuse he suffered as a child in a home overseen by Mrs Hodge as leader of Islington Council.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Hodge

"Following a media campaign conducted by several national newspapers calling for her to resign, she was further drawn into the controversy by responding to the man in question by letter and referring to him in it as 'extremely disturbed'.

"Following this the man passed the letter to the press which planned to publish it, only to be judicially restrained from doing so at the instruction of Mrs Hodge.

"The letter was eventually published, mainly on the grounds that the blocking of the letter was seen as disproportionate to the reaction from the press, who usually resist such legal interference in their right to publish.

"Mrs Hodge was forced to publicly apologise and offer to contribute to a charity of the man's choosing as recompense. This effectively ended the affair in the eyes of the press.

"Privacy International awarded Margaret Hodge the 2004 Big Brother Award for 'Worst Public Servant' for her backing of controversial initiatives including the Universal Child Database.

"At a keynote speech to the Institute for Public Policy Research on 26 November, 2004, Hodge strongly defended the idea of greater state regulation of individuals' choices, stating that 'some may call it the nanny state but I call it a force for good'."

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Margaret_Hodge

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