Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse blog: terms of reference remain unchanged although internal review of practices is underway

Professor Alexis Jay OBE has issued a short statement and a letter to Core Participants (on 6 and 8 September respectively), both of which emphasise that she and the Panel are committed to the work of the Inquiry and to delivering results with pace, confidence and clarity. The letter confirms that Professor Jay OBE has no intention of asking the Home Secretary to revise or reduce the Inquiry's terms of reference. This comes following press reports that the former Chair, Dame Lowell Goddard, criticised the scale and scope of the Inquiry and suggested that the terms of reference be reviewed.

Professor Jay OBE's letter notes that, upon assuming the role of Chair of the Inquiry, she ordered an internal review of the Inquiry's approach to its investigations, the aim of which is to explore new ways to deliver the Inquiry's investigative work while remaining faithful to its terms of reference. Professor Jay has indicated that she will write to Core Participants again at the conclusion of the review to inform them of any proposed changes and to seek their views. The letter also provides some further detail of the operations of the Inquiry at this stage.

It is clear that the Chair’s intention is to continue apace with the Inquiry without seeking to amend the terms of reference, meaning that the Inquiry’s focus remains unbounded by time and will continue to look at institutions in all areas of British life. However, it is possible that new approaches may be adopted following the current Chair’s internal review, with a view to delivering the Inquiry’s investigative work in the most efficient manner.

For any questions regarding the work of the Inquiry or your organisation’s response to it, please contact our Public & Regulatory department.


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Claire Whittle

Senior Associate

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Melanie Carter

Partner and Head of Public & Regulatory

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Emma Dowden-Teale


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Posted on 12/09/2016 in Legal Updates

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