Saturday, October 1, 2016

Don’t cancel the child abuse inquiry. No matter how much it’s hurt us survivors

Theresa May
In early August when I heard that Lowell Goddard had chosen to step down from the child abuse inquiry, I literally started to cry. That she initially resigned without any explanation made it even worse. It was a sharp shock. Survivors of sexual abuse are used to the world opening up underneath their feet and dropping down into nothingness, and that same feeling of upset returned to me from over 30 years ago when I heard the news. The chaos, rumours, resignations and industrial-strength ineptness that have both preceded Goddard and, more disconcertingly, followed her exit – culminating this week in not only the departure of Ben Emmerson QC but also his deputy Elizabeth Prochaska – have left me with just a single question: what the actual fuck is happening here?

The key issue for me, and probably for most of the survivors who this inquiry was designed to give a voice to, is one of trust. Theresa May fought for this inquiry. She fought for us. Back in July 2014 when she announced it as home secretary, you could almost see the eye-rolling going on among certain Tory party members. Yet, to her immense credit, she persevered. And then came the catalogue of mistakes, disasters and obstructions that, to all but the most naive of us, simply scream cover-up.  (more...)

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