Courage of whistleblowers

For Calderdale Police’s safeguarding team, Cartwright’s jail term brings to an end a large-scale investigation both difficult and disturbing.

When detectives heard about the allegations, they quickly met other agencies to discuss the next move.

Cartwright was arrested and, on the same day, officers and social workers started breaking the news to parents – more than 30.

Helplines and emergency child-care providers were offered. The team meticulously gathered evidence, including medical examinations.

Cartwright’s arrest soon caused tension and police were deployed to keep the peace.

Detective Inspector Gail Lawrie described the victims and their relatives as courageous and the people who had spoken out about Cartwright’s cruelty as incredibly brave.

“This investigation took time and a great deal of patience and effort. Careful working together with partners and professionals ensured a clear case was presented to the CPS.

“Cartwright harmed vulnerable children while their parents believed their children were being professionally looked.

“Any parent can only imagine the upset and trauma.

“I would like to praise their courage and the individuals who brought this to our attention.”

Janet Donaldson, head of children’s services at Calderdale Council, said: “The welfare of children is top priority. It is always distressing to hear of children being harmed.”