3 Jul 2016

Isolated Pitcairn calls for new social worker

4:25 pm on 3 July 2016

Pitcairn, one of the world's most isolated communities which became notorious for sex crimes against children, is recruiting a new social worker.

St Pauls Point, Pitcairn Island

St Pauls Point, Pitcairn Island Photo: Supplied

The government is looking for a family and community adviser and says it wants applicants with experience in safeguarding children and caring for the elderly.

The role would be one of five social positions, including a policeman, doctor and teacher, recruited to work in the UK overseas territory.

The islands were also advertising for a new telecommunications service to increase to two the number of television channels the 42 residents can access, and to provide telephone, internet and mobile coverage, including to monitor home detention tags.

Governor of Pitcairn Jonathan Sinclair, who is also the British High Commissioner to New Zealand, said the biggest challenge for staff was the isolation, although the residents realised that things needed to change if their community was going to survive.

"What I've seen in the last two years as governor is a real change in attitudes, a willingness to engage on child safeguarding, a desire to put the past behind them and to move forward. And the current family and community advisor has been integral in that process."

He said the current adviser was finishing a two-year term on the island.

It comes as the islands' former mayor prepares to appeal his conviction and 20-month jail sentence, next week, for downloading more than 1000 child-sex images and videos.

Six Pitcairn islanders were jailed in 2004 for incest and the rape and indecent assault of girls as young as 10.