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Care Home Abuse Victims Denied An Inquiry

By Marion Scott, Scottish Sunday Mail, 11/07/2004

THOUSANDS of Scots abused as children at care homes and residential schools are being denied a public inquiry into the crimes.

Victims have been campaigning for an investigation into how decades of sexual and physical abuse were never discovered.

But last night the Executive claimed an inquiry was "not in the public interest".

Furious Alan Draper of support group In Care Abuse Survivors said: "An inquiry is the only avenue left open to many victims. Instead of admitting the mistakes of the past, the Executive have merely made matters worse by doing their best to sweep it under the carpet." Lanarkshire SNP MSP Linda Fabiani added: "The Executive must listen to those who suffered in these regimes and not shy away from holding a public inquiry into these establishments."

Minister for Education and Young People, Peter Peacock, will write to survivors this week confirming there will be no inquiry.

He said: "We recognise some survivors might welcome an inquiry but others might prefer the issue was not raised in public because that would reopen old wounds.

"Individuals are already pursuing their legal rights to compensation through the civil courts and we would need to be very careful not to jeopardise that process through an inquiry."

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