News broke yesterday of the appointment of Professor Alexis Jay to head the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse. Professor Jay will replace Dame Lowell Goddard, the New Zealand lawyer who resigned from the chair of the Inquiry this week.
However Imran Khan, a solicitor for a group of survivors that has been granted core participant status at the inquiry, has said that his clients want "some reassurance" failing which there "may have to be a challenge."
Professor Jay is already a member of the IICSA's expert panel, and she has a 30 year history in social work. Apparently the objection to her appointment stems from concerns amongst survivors, about her ability to investigate the past failures of her own profession. There may also be concerns about the fact that she does not come from the legal profession.
Peter Garsden, President of the Association of Child Abuse Lawyers went on the BBC today to say that he welcomed Professor Jay's appointment.
There are a number of points to be made here.
Malcolm Johnson, Specialist Child Abuse Lawyer