This would be a 10 minute long radio (The World Tonight) piece comprised of pre-recorded segments and an in-studio discussion.
The package’s peg is the release of a report, commissioned from Bedfordshire University, entitled “It’s wrong but you get used to it”, and the follow-up report, from the Office of the Children’s Commissioner’s Inquiry into Child Exploitation in Gangs and Groups, entitled “If only someone had listened” about the issue of the sexual exploitation of girls in gangs. I would like the presenter to open with the package explaining some of the statistics given in the report and saying briefly that these reports are so important because they are the first to give an in-depth look at the effects of gangs on the lives of the girls rather than the boys inducted into them.
The package would have interviews with girls (probably anonymous) who are being helped by the charity The Nia Project (02076831270) after being physically and sexually abused when they were part of gangs.
I do not think it is feasible to speak to active gang members (though it may be possible under the conditions of anonymity for them) but I would like to contact the charities Target Against Gangs (08000329538) who work with ex-gang members to ask those who have been in gangs about how they saw girls being treated.
Finally I would like to have in the studio (or a pre-recorded studio discussion) The Deputy Children’s Commissioner for England Sue Berelowitz and Colin James from Gangs Unite (which runs the Girls in Gangs programme in Waltham Forest) to discuss what actions should really be taken to combat the problems the reports highlights.
Some ideas for wild-track: sound of schools (the report suggests better relationship education in schools), sound of young women.