THERE have been renewed calls for an immediate independent inquiry into Jersey’s child abuse scandal from a group set up by the alleged victims.
Yesterday the Jersey Care Leavers Association said that they were relieved that no children were murdered at Haut de la Garenne and that they were now hoping that alleged abusers would be held to account.
Senior police officers in charge of the historical child abuse inquiry have reassured complainants that getting justice for them is their main priority. The major child abuse investigation was launched in 2006 and initially police said that they had received more than 100 allegations of abuse in the Island’s care homes.
The Deputy Chief Officer of the States police, David Warcup, has met the Jersey Care Leavers Association and has reassured the group that anyone guilty of abusing children would be brought to the courts. Yesterday a spokesperson for the Jersey Care Leavers Association said: ‘We are relieved that there is no evidence of children having been murdered at Haut de la Garenne. This finding opens the way for a proper accounting of the abuse that many people suffered in the child care system in Jersey over decades.’
Will McMahon, chairman of the UK Care Leavers Association, added: ‘What is required as soon as possible is a full and independent inquiry into the child abuse scandal that has taken place on the Island. Only then, and only after reparation being made to the victims, will Jersey be able to look to the future.’
Speaking at a press conference yesterday afternoon, Chief Minister Frank Walker (pictured) reassured the victims that they would have their full support. ‘There is already a great deal of contact between the care leavers and ministers and this will obviously continue. We will do everything we possibly can to support all the victims.’
He has already announced that there will be a full public inquiry once the investigation and any prosecutions have been completed. In September the care leavers group wrote to Senator Walker calling for a public apology from the States of Jersey and an open an inquiry to investigate the allegations of historical child abuse in the Island’s care homes.