tv Britains Care Scandal Exposed BBC News November 23, 2019 12:30am-1:01am GMT
this is bbc news. the headlines: president trump says he would welcome a full trial in the senate if the house of representatives votes to impeach him. he told fox news the process would help him get re—elected. mr trump added he'd like to hear from the whistle—blower whose report led to the inquiry. with less than three weeks to go to the british general election, the leaders of the four biggest parties at westminster, have been given a grilling by members of the public, in a special edition of the bbc‘s question time. there were uncomfortable moments for them all as they made their pitches. a criminal investigation in russia has begun into a video in which children ask a gay man questions about his life and sexuality. promoting homosexuality to young people has been banned since 2013 and those involved in making the video fear they could be charged. now on bbc news — a year—long investigation has revealed that
vulnerable young people in care, some as young as 11, are increasingly being placed in unregulated homes. bbc special correspondent ed thomas found young people living in caravans, kidnapped from outside placements, and even trafficked across the country. a warning — you may find some of the details included in this programme upsetting. inside the unregulated homes failing to protect our most vulnerable children. it was a little hellhole. living here was a punishment by a year—long investigation his stories of abuse, exploitation, and despair. how many times did you attempt to ta ke how many times did you attempt to take your life? i think about three times. it was disgusting. no-one should ever lay their hand on someone should ever lay their hand on someone like that. people bringing in acids, knives, samurai swords.
that house was a drug deal house. they had to live there because they couldn't go anywhere else. we reveal the caravans and holiday homes being used to her —— house are most vulnerable children, speak to a worker who witnessed failures. and that was it. that was the last time i saw her. traffic, gone. yeah, gone. and asked what needs to be changed. it is not a loophole. it is a scandal. if action isn't taken on the back of this programme and we are colluding in letting groomers, predatory paedophiles go after those children. i was children. iwas in children. i was in my care home at some independent place and a car came up in the drive. they didn't know who it was. and then a bag put over my
head, got flung in the boot, got taken to a random house out in the country, got flannels put over my face, got stripped, got beaten. i was stabbed once in my shoulder and twice in my leg. when i got lecco i was laying on the road dying. kidnapped while in care —— got let go. this is the story of young people in unregulated homes, all —— are people in unregulated homes, all —— a re often called people in unregulated homes, all —— are often called semi— independent accommodation, mainly for those in oi’ accommodation, mainly for those in or leaving the care system. this teenager is 17 and has been in care since the age of five. for the past two years since the age of five. for the past two yea rs he since the age of five. for the past two years he has been in a great —— unregulated homes. most weeks he goes missing, often to sell drugs. unregulated homes. most weeks he goes missing, often to sell drugsi was going missing every day four months on end. did the unregulated home have your phone number? yeah. were they bringing you? no. how easy was it for you to get involved in cou nty was it for you to get involved in county lines drug dealing? easy. if
you live in an unregulated home checks are made by counsel. this teenager was she was repeatedly exploded by drug banks. teenager was she was repeatedly exploded by drug banksli teenager was she was repeatedly exploded by drug banks. i would be at one place they would take me to another place. to sell heroin and cocaine? why didn't you say no? they said if you are —— they said if you say no, you are going to get killed and yourfamily say no, you are going to get killed and your family will get killed. our figures indicate that the number of times young people have gone missing from unregulated homes has more than doubled in the last three days. all the money i got from doing i was using it to get home. despite growing up in central london, he was sent to live in an unregulated home hundreds of miles away in north wales. there was no family around me. they had no friends. everyone was coming up to me, because they knew it wasn't from the area, can you do this for us, can you do that for us, because you want no—one. two months of being their eye lost my mum. they didn't get to go to my mum's funeral. the care system made
me, social services, and the government, made me feel like i'd should not be around anymore. did you try to take your life? i've tried a couple of times. what was going through your mind?” tried a couple of times. what was going through your mind? i wanted to see my mum. and be out of this weather does not care for me. these pictures show young people in homes with weapons and weapons. we found out more than 50 people were sexually abused or exploited after going missing last year. our information requests also revealed that around one in six missing episodes features a young person already known to be at risk of child sexual exploitation. we've learned that there are some children in care under the age of 16
are staying in caravans, narrowboats, and holiday homes. the ca re narrowboats, and holiday homes. the care regulator in england says it is entirely legal for an unregulated home to accommodate children like this, if they offer support and not care. short holiday breaks or a mobile, like a narrowboat. but we have heard of loopholes being exploited. here, near blackpool, ca re exploited. here, near blackpool, care children will spend up to four weeks in one caravan before being moved to another in the same part, to try to get around rules governing short—term placements. what was happening? different case, a 15—year—old girl was placed in eight unregulated homes by dorset council, run bya unregulated homes by dorset council, run by a number of companies, including at this holiday home. she picked the knife up, started waving it around into my face. an absolute nervous wreck. she was upset. the two carers started explaining why she is here to be assessed and all
that, and they said you can't be here, that is not enough. dorset council said the girls move so much because there aren't enough registered placements to support children with very complex needs. she described it as a prison. one of the sad words was wouldn't it be nice to wake up with the same faces instead of getting different carers in every other day? who eyewitness that night will stay with me for some time. —— who eye witness. that night will stay with me for some time. -- who eye witness. the vast majority of residents in unregulated homes are over the age of 16. it is about halfway down, isn't it? a year ago we were told that vulnerable teenagers are being badly failed while living in many unregulated homes. but multiple people mentioned one company in particular. and what's the name of the one we're going to now? young
people from six different council areas placed in these homes, designed to provide support and not care. many were children in care who had faced some of the most challenging home lives imaginable, including childhood abuse and family tragedy. this one here. yes. this is where she lived. we obtained this confidential briefing sent around councils with claims of serious safeguarding failings in homes in essex and london run by a company called sintering care —— century in care. we set out to find the young people affect did. —— affected.
we set out to find the young people affect did. -- affected. it was horrendous, drug taking, motorbikes being stolen, girls being taken out by policemen, early hours of the morning, his would come running up here to run around the block asthma croquettes. we learned that because we're conducting surveillance on this over young people caught up with criminal gangs. this over young people caught up with criminal gangslj this over young people caught up with criminal gangs. i saw them dealing drugs. they heard the boys selling cocaine. selling cocaine from a care home? yeah. it's like they had their own operation on the second floor. they used to have buggies and scales and there was a lot of... scales? 2-way cannabis? do selcuk inan? they not measuring flower. —— to selling cocaine. carlos pena is in foster homes before being sent there. -- carlos pena. myself and would be quite
severe. there was a situation where it had been really bad and i've lost a lot of blood. they went down to the staff and said are you need to ta ke the staff and said are you need to take me to the hospital. and they we re take me to the hospital. and they were like they can't leave the boys unattended. refusing to take you to hospital? he said you should just go walk to the shop. she says she was taken to a pharmacy and hour later. inside the home her mental health deteriorated. and hour later. inside the home her mental health deterioratedlj and hour later. inside the home her mental health deteriorated. i took 20 paracetamol in one go in an evening. how many times did you attempt to take your life? think about three times. centurion care told us it was only aware of one incident where carla overdosed and on one occasion she was taken to.
all of their homes had first aid kits, incidents were recorded and sent to social workers, and they cooperated with police, installing cctv to prevent drug dealing. they keep calling it a care home but it is just keep calling it a care home but it isjust a keep calling it a care home but it is just a house where people profit from young, vulnerable children. with their move to another centurion ca re with their move to another centurion care home, two miles away where they looked after by with learning disabilities. that one, yeah. and we obtained this. a recording outside the home shopping the child in the yellow shirt in distress lashing out. police were called here to an allegation of assault by a boy on a worker. we can't be sure what led up to this. but watch how the worker
responds. tia was a resident at the time. that probably would have scared the life out of him. when you talk to him it is like talking to a five—year—old child. they are supposed to be looking after the child, not attacking the child with special needs. that is just wrong. what would that have done? that would probably have scared the life out of him. that would scare the life out of me if they had someone do that to me and someone with his disability... what else to staff members due to him? are used to swear, screaming members due to him? are used to swear, screaming his face, tell him that they were going to take his balloons away. he loved balloons. they would come in with cars, princesses, everything, there was not one balloon he did not have. and they just used not one balloon he did not have. and theyjust used to take them, popped them, said there, threaten him, threaten him with police, if you don't put your plate in the synco will call the police. what was his
reaction when that happens? he was petrified. he would grab his hair and pace and he would go to cry and say i have done nothing, i don't need it. he would rush to do whatever they wanted him to do. centurion care told us police were given cctv. no—one was charged with an offence. and they won't aware of any allegation of bullying on this boy —— won't aware. we spent weeks trying to track down someone we spent weeks trying to track down someone who knew the children involved. one worker agreed to meet us involved. one worker agreed to meet us and talk. they were all very high
risk. and he was a support worker across many of the homes. sexually exploited drugs, abuse, some had disabilities, all in one roof. he wa nted disabilities, all in one roof. he wanted to take us to this house. she was taken by people, brought back may be, she wasn't even brought back, to be fair. he seemed most shocked about what happened here. he remembers a girl who regularly went missing. we saw a bunch of boys in a car. and shejust missing. we saw a bunch of boys in a car. and she just jumped missing. we saw a bunch of boys in a car. and shejustjumped in, really. from the spot? from the spot, literally right here. that was it. that was the last time we saw her. traffic, gone? yeah, gone. days later he managed to reach the teenager on her phone. she just sounds really scared, like she wasn't talking, they asked her where she is aware you or are you coming back, shejust
she is aware you or are you coming back, she just that i can't talk right now. and then she started whispering. but she started whispering, i heard like a voice, like someone shouting at her, a person has obviously come close to her. it seems like she has been hit and that the phone drops and i can't hear too much but i canjust here shouting. she was missing for more than a week before she was found in the midlands. there is no suggestion that care staff were involved in her trafficking. it took months to find out who she was and where she now lived. a lot of people go through things where, like, the system —— the care system where you give up, you are alone. what was the impact on you being taken like that?l you are alone. what was the impact on you being taken like that? a bad impact. it was the worst. you know.
no—one deserves that. impact. it was the worst. you know. no-one deserves that. like many children in care, she was placed in a home outside of a local authority. ididn't a home outside of a local authority. i didn't have no friends or anything. i was far away from, like... and area i have known. i was a lwa ys like... and area i have known. i was always running away, trying to get away from the home, i was trying to get away from the environment. what we re get away from the environment. what were you hoping it would be? just, like, a fresh start. so i can just... move on and then get my own home. just start fresh. she says she was also sexually abused by a young person in the home. did the staff members phone the police? no. did the staff members remove the boys from the home who had been hurting you? no, theyjust told me that is
what i wanted. they told us all staff had safeguarding training. missing person procedures were followed and they had no record of a sexual assault allegation. how do you sum up your experience? appalling. someone needs to pay a price for the pain. during our investigation, we also heard stories of vulnerable children exposed to weapons, drugs and organised crime. people bringing in acid. this teenager also lived in a home run by the same people. knives, samurai swords, everything. home run by the same people. knives, samurai swords, everythinglj home run by the same people. knives, samurai swords, everything. i don't know how they can get past the cameras. terrified, he would lock himself in his room. how do you know it was acid in the bottle?|j himself in his room. how do you know it was acid in the bottle? i could smell it. it burnt my nose. what was
your reaction when that happened? what did you do? put it down and put we nt what did you do? put it down and put went straight into my room and barricaded my door because i didn't feel safe. he says strangers were coming and going from the home. they turned up who live there and they pulled it out on the table and i saw it. what did you see? the samurai sword. how big was it? probably about nine, ten inches probably. every ten minutes, the door was going, like, going straight in and out, in and out, going around the corner, doing their drug deals and coming straight back. the drug was basically a drug deal house. but i had to live there because i couldn't go nowhere else. centurion care told us go nowhere else. centurion care told us they worked with police and neighbours to prevent drug dealing and any young person who smoked cannabis in the placement was asked to leave. of a young man whose stories we followed in the care, we
learned that for one central have returned to prison since leaving the home. immanuel... one family agreed to let us talk to their son inside prison. fed? you were not eating inside there? it is down to the young person to manage their finances and food. immanuel repeatedly disappeared because he was involved in county lines drug dealing. how did they get you in the home? how did they get you in the home? how did they find you in basildon? could you have said no?
did you ever ask the staff being cited centurion care to help? immanuel was jailed for possession with intent to supply heroin and crack cocaine. centurion care said they felt all children were safe and secure across their placements. working for centurion care was and it was my first job with working for centurion care was and it was my firstjob with young people. a lot of bad things have happened. i don't feel too good about what is happening so i wasn't too happy. he told us at times he felt hopeless. it was completely out of control, absolute manic, wild, like, some people had drugs in the house, there was somebody people that ended up having loads of amounts of cash and there was nothing you could have really done about it because other staff members didn't do anything about it.
this confidential council briefing we have obtained on centurion care says some workers were known to police for arrests that didn't leave to charges. —— lead to charges. centurion care says it is not aware of these disclosures on any of the workers enhanced dbs checks, which we re workers enhanced dbs checks, which were available at any —— every local authority inspection and no concerns we re authority inspection and no concerns were raised. essex police was unable to tell us what this police involvement was discovered and whether it should have been revealed to centurion care on the dbs cheques. her vulnerability was quite high... and he says another girl reported being ta ken high... and he says another girl reported being taken from one of the homes, given alcohol and drugs before having sex with a man who occasionally worked in the home. police said there was not enough evidence any crime was committed.
the confidential briefing says the man had several convictions and had been previously investigated but not charged of an alleged sex offence involving a child. centurion care said the contractor didn't need to be dbs checked, his role was known to the local authority, they cooperated with the police and there was no further action. the council placed many of the children inside the home. it said it was unable to —— unable to comment on police matters or individual cases. the homes were closed in 2017 and the company dissolved, but an investigation was launched into organised and complex abuse facing children living there. in and out, in and out, going around the corner, doing their drug deals and coming back. that backhouse was basically a drug deal house. i am outraged, outraged and upset in equal measure
about what i have just seen. dame louise casey led an investigation into rotherham council after hundreds of children were sexually exploited in the town. it is a scandal. i want those homes regulated. how urgent is that? tomorrow. a shame as it has taken the bbc, the same way it was in rotherham the same way the media to lift the lid on it what you should be doing something about. this story goes beyond one provider, city council. dame louise fears young people are not protected across unregulated homes. and you are exposing the voices, which i can only hope means that it is listened to in only hope means that it is listened toina only hope means that it is listened to in a different way. it is time for whitehall to wake up to this. it isa for whitehall to wake up to this. it is a disgrace. if action isn't taken on the back of this programme, we are colluding and letting groomers, predatory paedophiles go after those children, and that is our responsibility and that is why i find it so upsetting.
you could be running a full on crack operation and people wouldn't know anything. some of the young people we spoke to across the year had positive experiences, but most wanted the ca re system experiences, but most wanted the care system to change. what should happen to these homes? they need to be watched more, they need to have inspectors and professional people who actually know what they are doing going in there and checking in there and regulating everything. doing going in there and checking in there and regulating everythinglj thought they would give me some sort of childhood. they say they are there to support you. it is a lie. it isa there to support you. it is a lie. it is a recruiting game. they are going to get recruited, the same stuff is going to keep going on. there are more than 5000 children and young people living in unregulated homes across england and wales. tonight, on average, 30 will go missing. the association of directors of children's services says unregulated homes can provide a
probe. and flexible options but it recognises and shares the concern at this is not always the case. the government repeatedly declined to be interviewed, but said councils have a legal duty to make sure accommodation for these children is suitable. they keep calling it a care home, but it is just a house where people profit from young, vulnerable children. i never really had any support. all i had was basically a bed. whoever was involved and whoever did what they did, someone needs to pay a price for the pain. across england and wales, there has been more than a dozen so—called organised and complex abuse investigations into failures to protect children in unregulated homes. the stories of those children
are unlikely to ever be heard. hello there. rain is the main concern over the next 2a hours. there are various met office warnings warning about that persistent rain, but there could be some travel disruption, even possible flooding. it's certainly been wet through the evening and night across the south—west and wales and across northern ireland. that rain's been moving northwards, so the warnings come into force as well through the midlands and then northern england, and eventually parts of scotland too. so, given that we've already had
well in excess of what we'd normally see through the autumn, rain—wise, there is a concern that there will be some further flooding because we could see another half a month's worth of rain in some parts of england, wales and later up into scotland as well. it looks pretty wet for northern ireland as well. all this rain is meandering around. an area of low pressure towards the south—west. so, even once the main rain clears, there'll be showers around, some quite hefty ones. they dry up for a time, but we'll have a legacy of drizzly and rather cloudy weather, low clouds and some hill fog around as well. you can see the day looks quite wet through the midlands, northern england and through the afternoon as well. that rain's creeping up into eastern parts of scotland. so, the north—west, after a chilly start, might see the best of the sunshine. the northern isles as well doing quite well in terms of dry and bright weather on saturday, but the rain then arrives through the evening and overnight, across eastern and north—western parts of scotland. elsewhere, well, we see a brief ridge of high pressure, so that's a window of drier weather, 12 to 2a hours for most of us before the next low pressure rolls
in by the end of sunday and into monday. so, sunday does look like the drier day of the weekend for most of us — not all of us, but most of us. however, there'll be a lot of grey weather, some morning fog. of course, after all that moisture around, that takes a long time to clear in november because we're lacking strength in the sun, and then itjust lifts into low cloud. we've got a much wetter day for the northern isles and here comes the rain later on. the winds won't be as strong tomorrow as they will be today, so it'll feel cold today just because of so it'll feel cold today just because of the wind as well as all the cloud. but that's easing tomorrow. but still, it's only 9 to 11, which is about average for the time of year. sunday night seasonarrival of rain. tuesday's rain on monday night, tuesday looks a bit more persistent once again. we are into this unsettled picture. temperatures are up on those of last week. there's just a hint that later in the week we might again get a respite from the rain and has some drier weather. but for the weekend, yes,
hello, i'm ben bland with a summary of bbc world news. president trump says he wants to face an impeachment trial in the senate. but he also wants the anonymous whistleblower — who raised concerns about his phone calls to ukraine — to give evidence. mr trump is currently being investigated by a house of representatives committee. it's examining claims that he withheld military aid to force ukraine to investigate his political rival, joe biden — which he denies. nada tawfik has more. adjourned. less than 2a hours after two weeks of dramatic and contentions public impeachment hearings ended, president trump out with his counter—attack.