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Vera Baird QC welcomes reassurance that child abuse inquiry will not be halted

5th August 2016

Vera Baird QC and fellow Police and Crime Commissioners have been reassured by the National Police Lead for Child Protection and Abuse Investigations, that the work of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) , headed up by Justice Goddard, will not be halted despite her resignation last night.

Simon Bailey, QPM, has advised The Association of Police and Crime Commissioners (APCC) that the work of Operation Hydrant –  the investigation into allegations of non-recent child sexual abuse – will continue as normal. Relevant partners are to be updated as soon as information is known and the operation team will remain on hand to offer best practice guidance, support and expertise in relation to complex investigations.

Vital commitments to improving and maintaining the national policing response to investigating allegations of non-recent child sexual abuse by prominent figures and those within an institutional setting, as well as the ongoing safeguarding of victims will remain, the APCC has been told.

The resignation of Justice Goddard came following the release of statistics from the British Crime Survey of England and Wales, which revealed that 1 in 14 adults were likely to have been abused as a child.

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner, Vera Baird QC, said: “It is essential that we see this inquiry continue without further interruption. This is owed to the brave victims and survivors of this terrible abuse who deserve to see justice.

“Yesterday’s statistics have highlighted the scale and severity of this issue and the Government simply cannot afford to let down those who have suffered at the hands of abusers and are finding a voice.

“I look forward to hearing news of the appointment of a new chair so this vital investigation can get on track without further delay.”