DUBAI: A British Labour MP has slammed a colleague’s claim that Pakistani men are “predominately” involved in grooming young girls for sexual abuse.
MP Naz Shah accused Sarah Champion of making “blanket, racialized, loaded statements” and branded her as “irresponsible.”
The Bradford West MP went on to say that the majority of abusers are white men, not Pakistanis, The Independent reported Sunday.
Champion, a shadow minister, made the comments recently, in relation to the Rotherham sexual abuse case, in which a gang of Asian and Middle Eastern men was found to have been grooming young girls for abuse.
It was “predominately Pakistani men” who were involved in such cases “time and time and time again,” Champion said.
She followed up her comments with an opinion editorial in The Sun newspaper, with the headline: “British Pakistani men ARE raping and exploiting white girls – and it’s time we faced up to it.”
In the article, she wrote: “Britain has a problem with British Pakistani men raping and exploiting white girls.”
In a counter-article for The Independent, Shah said: “Such an incendiary headline and article is not only irresponsible but is also setting a very dangerous precedent and must be challenged.”
She argued that abusers are predominantly white men, but “we wouldn’t suggest that white people ‘are raping children’ and or use the whole community to describe the actions of a few criminals.
“That would not only be horrific but simply put, it would be ridiculous.”
“I also have two sons. Blanket racialized loaded statements like these set them up to fail before they even reach their teenage years.”