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Job advert for CSE chair being prepared

By Dominic Robertson | Telford | Crime | Published: | Last Updated:

Experience, compassion and impartiality – those are just three of the qualities the chairman of the Telford CSE inquiry will need, according to a draft job advert.

In the recruitment pack, law firm Eversheds Sutherland – who were appointed as inquiry commissioners last month – describe their ideal candidate and the responsibilities he or she will be asked to take on.

If approved by a cross-party panel and Telford and Wrekin Council’s cabinet this week, the final advertisement will be published and the would-be chairman will have a one-month window in which to apply.

The document says the role “is not anticipated to be full-time throughout the lifetime of the inquiry” and that some work could be done remotely, but it will involve some “intense periods of work” and regular travel to Telford and the surrounding area.

Under “skills/experience required”, the advert includes: “The capacity to examine issues in a thorough, impartial and flexible way [and] an ability to manage sensitive material and a sensitive subject with care, compassion and understanding.”

It also asks for experience of involvement in inquiries or similar investigations and experience relating to child sexual exploitation.

The draft advert says the purpose of the inquiry is to “establish the facts of child sexual exploitation in Telford, to identify if, and where, public and other services have failed and, where possible, establish who is accountable, and make recommendations for the future”.

The responsibilities will include “working with the commissioning body to finalise the terms of reference and parameters of the inquiry” and eventually “producing a report which is thorough, comprehensive and evidence-based”.

The recruitment pack does not include a proposed salary, or hourly or daily rate, but instead asks applicants to submit their own bids.

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“The remuneration proposals will form part of the evaluation criteria during short-listing and interview stage, and therefore is a competitive part of the recruitment process,” it adds.

“Applicants are reminded that it will be the council, a local authority, who will bear the cost of the independent chair’s fees.”

A draft timetable, included in the recruitment pack, suggests publishing the advertisement late this month, with a closing date in late March.

After shortlisting, interviews will take place in April and a decision and appointment is currently expected in May.

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The recruitment pack, along with a progress report from Eversheds, will be discussed by the Inquiry Member Advisory Group, when it meets today.

If approved, both documents will then pass to Telford and Wrekin’s cabinet, who meet on Thursday.

By Alex Moore, local democracy reporter

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