Originally Posted by jerseyporter
Can I just say that much of what was 'alleged' during the abuse scandal and investigation has been proved to be false. Yes, there were isolated cases of abuse, some of which were perpertrated by some of the adults who worked at Haut de la Garenne, but far less in statistical terms than many other historical abuse cases which have been investigated in recent times.
Much of the stuff on the internet regarding the allegations here, and those involved (including Jimmy Saville) has not been updated to take into account the results of the extensive enquiries which took place locally after the national hue and cry died down.
Additionally, Lennie Harper, the senior policeman who declared the coconut shell to be a piece of skull (the thing which kicked it all off) has been TOTALLY discredited, and so have many of those who worked along side him, following several trials locally in the Royal Court (our equivalent of the Old Bailey). In addtion many of the 'witnesses' were also proved to have misled the police in their statements, and although there were some proven cases of child abuse which came about because of the Haut de la Garenne case, many of those proven cases took place in other foster homes in Jersey run by a very small number of couples, NOT at Haut de la Garenne. Finally, at no time was the name Jimmy Saville brought up in court in any serious way in relation to the abuse cases that were proven - all of the guilty parties were local people.
So before you start slinging mud about regarding a case which I'm willing to bet you know nothing about beyond the first few sensational headlines in the national press, please check your facts. Jersey is a small place - many innnocent people have been tarred with something they shouldn't have been, and the guilty have been dealt with.
Child protection here is now extremely strict - many of our rules and regulations came in way before the UK cottoned on to their importance - and whilst there were mistakes and oversights in the past, you can say that of ANY town or care system in the UK too. We were not unique, but we were painted as something we were not because of a policeman who wanted to go out on a 'high', and therefore opened his big mouth before the evidence had been established. Yes, it provided good headlines painting our little island, known for it's off-shore businesses and Bergerac, as the most evil place in the British Isles for that short time, but it wasn't accurate and it wasn't fair.
The Jimmy Saville accusations are just that at the moment - accusations made after the fact. They may, or may not be true, but this time I hope the police will investigate it thoroughly before they start 'establishing' facts that aren't facts at all. Time will tell. But Jersey has no place in this story.
My mum spent 14 years living at Haute de la Garenne, the Jersey Children's Home, and I can tell you that an awful lot of what was claimed to have happened - did happen. I can also tell you that there are things which have still no come out. I can tell you that people in official positions were involved in things which haven't come out yet, but this has been covered up. My mum lives abroad now, but has had numerous interviews with the police in Jersey - she's been requested to attend on many occasions, and has been flown into the Island to speak to the police, and has given lots of evidence to them. She has been believed all along. She suffered terribly there and had a horrendous childhood and had numerous spells as a psychiatric patient due to her experiences there.
Incidently, I can remember as a child her telling me that she'd met Jimmy Saville!!