There’s been a lot of movement at the nation’s Independent Inquiry Into Child Sexual Abuse this week, so we felt it was important to write a post on this.
The resignation of another senior lawyer at the Inquiry has left victims and survivors feeling angry and disappointed that panel members are allowing disagreements to get in the way of the Inquiry’s work.
Adding to this feeling of despair is the news that the Inquiry’s investigation into the late Peer, Lord Janner, has also been delayed. The damning report into Police investigations over the allegations of a VIP paedophile ring, which identified over 40 failings, has also left its mark – ‘Nick’, the man who claimed he had been raped by several MPs is now himself under investigation. The police have rounded on the judge who made the findings, warning that the report could deter victims from coming forward in the future.
One question still remains: despite the failings, how can we be sure that Nick’s allegations are unfounded?
An ex MP who was accused of abusing children, and later cleared due to a lack of evidence has spoken out about the hardship the 18 month investigation has caused him. Harvey Proctor says the experience has left him without a home and a job and is now almost unemployable as a result of the allegations. He has since decided to take legal action against the police. Whilst we have every sympathy for those wrongly accused of a crime, Mr Proctor was given an apology by the police for their investigation of him – more than the average citizen gets when they’re accused of a crime they’re eventually cleared of. Perhaps the government will think about looking into improving the way law enforcement deals with allegations, for everyone, not just the elite.
We can expect to hear more next week about the alleged sexual assault at the Inquiry, and possible reasons for panel lawyers resigning in droves – The Home Affairs Select Committee has asked lawyers to explain why they have chosen to leave the inquiry, and offer insight into the sexual assault allegation made by an individual against the Inquiry’s most senior lawyer at the time. We’ll share these letters with you as soon as they’re published.
And finally, some good news: you can now write to the Inquiry for free just by using their new FREEPOST address. Just write ‘Freepost HEAD OFFICE’ on your envelope (no other address details are needed).