|Resigned - Lady Butler-Sloss|
- The decision to appoint a person to lead the enquiry was too hurried, yet had been proposed for at least 18 months. Not enough research was done by the government.
- Lady Butler Schloss has much experience of leading enquiries but is now 80 - whilst she has a razor sharp mind this enquiry would have taken several years. Would it be expecting too much of her?
- She has led the Cleveland enquiry which was somewhat controversial in its outcome. Children who allegedly had been abused were returned to their allegedly abusive parents. The process of evidence collection was found to be flawed and Social Services were heavily criticised. The outcome of the Princess Diana inquest was also controversial. She was criticised for holding an inquest without a jury.
- Whilst her competence and ability is undoubted, however, the perception of the survivor group is more important than anything.
- The one thing which survivors of abuse hate is the abuse of power of the state or indeed any public authority. Any suspicion publicly aired makes Lady Butler Schloss's role untenable, sadly, as I am sure she would have done a good job.
- Victims of abuse have witnessed at a young age the abuse of power of an adult whom they trusted. Thus it becomes a typical feature of their personality that they distrust authority intensely. She are also, usually, over protective of their children, and tend to over risk assess situations.
My choice would be Keir Starmer - why:-
- He has led a drive to change the way the Crown Prosecution Service investigate historical abuse.
- He is in favour of Mandatory Reporting (a change in the law to make it illegal to ignore and not report signs of abuse)
- He is an eminent lawyer and QC.
- He appears to be well balanced.
- He is now independent in that he is back to being a practising barrister, having resigned from the CPS.