The seventh preliminary hearing proceeded this morning. It is in respect of a thematic investigation which considers an issue rather than a specific organisation. It is unique in that it focuses on the aftermath of abuse rather than prevention.
Its approach is currently in three areas:
- sample case studies
- issues papers and expert seminars
The four case studies are:
- Forde Park Approved School
- St Leonard’s children’s home
- St Aidan’s and St Vincent’s children’s homes
- Children’s homes in North Wales
They have been selected on the basis that they allow consideration of the wide range of issues which arise in the area of accountability and reparation. Some have been chosen because they are examples of things done well and some because the approach taken may be open to criticism. More case studies may be included at a later date. 44 applicants applied to be made core participants, to date 25 have been granted that status. They include the Forde Park Survivors Group, Devon and Cornwall county councils, four police authorities, Zurich Insurance, MMI and Royal & Sun Alliance Insurance. No timetable has been set for the hearings in these case studies.
The issues papers are an opportunity for a wide consultation. They will be followed by expert seminars. The first two papers on the subjects of civil justice and criminal compensation will be published next week. The first expert seminars are expected to be held in late November. Criminal justice will be considered at a later date.
The research team have been considering the best practice in other jurisdictions.
Written by Paula Jefferson, Partner