Abuse Victim: 'Scrap Police Commissioners'

A victim of child abuse in Rotherham has told Sky News she believes Police and Crime Commissioners should be scrapped.

The woman, who was groomed as a teenager, has spoken out as people in South Yorkshire prepare to elect a replacement for Shaun Wright.

He reluctantly stood down from the role after a report revealed 1,400 children were abused in Rotherham over a 16-year period.

Mr Wright had been in charge of children's services in the town between 2005 and 2010 when he was a Labour councillor.

Speaking anonymously, the victim, who wants only to be known as Jessica, revealed she would not be voting for any of the four candidates on 30 October.

She told Sky News: "I think it should be scrapped, I don't actually see the need for it.

"They're on a very high salary which could be used for more useful things, especially in Rotherham with what's happened."

UKIP sees the election as an opportunity to get its first elected Police and Crime Commissioner.

The party has used its campaign to attack Labour, which runs the local council.

But one poster with the slogan "1,400 reasons why you should not trust Labour" has led to accusations of exploiting victims' suffering for political gain.

UKIP's candidate, Jack Clarkson, denies that's the case.

"That poster is a hard-hitting poster and I make no apologies for that," he said.

"It is the truth of what's happened in Rotherham."

The Labour candidate, Alan Billings, says it's unfair of UKIP but accepts there are questions for some in the Labour-led council.

He said: "I understand the anger around the council and those who were involved at that time have to take the consequences for their action or inaction, but this began as a crime and that was a police matter."

All the candidates accept public trust in the authorities will need to be won back.

Ian Walker, who is standing for the Conservatives, told Sky News: "The Home Affairs Select Committee report that came out only a couple of weeks ago identified that there's a public perception of an organised cover up.

"We absolutely need someone who is untainted by association with councils in the past, who is not a recycled politician, to be able to get to the bottom of this."

The English Democrats candidate David Allen added: "Political correctness, if you want to call it that, has prevented people from doing their jobs because they're frightened of being called racist."

But out in the streets in Rotherham most people have no intention of voting.

Turnout is expected to be low - perhaps even lower than in 2012 when just 15% of people voted.

Anger with the authorities has left many questioning whether promises of change will be kept.