It was the most ambitious national enquiry ever launched in this country at the time in 2013. This was to investigate the extent to which vulnerable girls and young women, dissociated from their parents and living in local authorities’ care homes, was satisfactory. The investigator, Alexis Jay, soon discovered that all was not well and that even in one local authority alone, Rotherham, scores of impressionable girls a year were being groomed by young men on the outside, seduced and then, usually, forced into sexual slavery.
Alexis Jay wrote a report which reverberated all over the country, especially when it was realised that all this was going on simultaneously in scores more towns and cities. Something had to be done. The government made a serious commitment and the Independent Inquiry in Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) was born. So far there have been three resignations of high social class, lawyer-type Chairmen, and also leading counsel. Alexis Jay becomes Chairman by default.
To prevent her own resignation, Alexis Jay badly needs the technical support of a couple of top-ranking civil servants not so much to help her case –Jay is thorouhly familiar with all the details — but tuition in the many ways that she can get respect in the conversational interplay in the prima donnas of the legal world to prevent them walking out in a huff.