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26 November 2012, 09:37
12 council workers from Rochdale are being investigated after a damning review criticised ``deficiencies'' in children's social care.
The review came four months after nine men were convicted of the systematic grooming and sexual abuse of girls in Heywood and Rochdale.
Current staff could face action, ranging from extra training to dismissal, once the council inquiry is completed early in the new year.
Any of the workers who have left the local authority could be referred to the social workers' regulatory body which has the power to have them struck off.
Linda Fisher, director of corporate services at Rochdale Borough Council, said: ``Our internal investigation into the handling of child sexual exploitation cases is progressing and will identify what action the council, as an employer needs to take.
``Where suspension is appropriate, it will take place. Where appropriate, former employees will be referred to the Health and Care Professions Council, the professional regulatory body for social workers.
``We are absolutely determined to build on the changes that have already been put in place to make young people more safe and secure and won't hesitate to take whatever action is appropriate where unacceptable practice is uncovered in accordance with the council's procedures.''
The Rochdale Borough Safeguarding Children Board review said the ``deficiencies'' in the way children's social care responded to the victims' needs were caused by ``patchy'' training of frontline staff.