Fiona Woolf is urged to quit child abuse inquiry as victims meet Theresa May

The Guardian

Rowena Mason, political correspondent
Friday 31 October 2014

Survivors of child abuse are calling on Fiona Woolf to stand down as the second head of the government’s inquiry at a crucial meeting on Friday.

Woolf is under pressure over her personal links to Lord Brittan, the former home secretary, who is likely to be called to give evidence to the inquiry over a dossier allegedly detailing Westminster paedophile activity that vanished from his department in the 1980s.

It has emerged that the Home Office helped Woolf to redraft seven times a letter detailing her contact with Brittan, in a way that downplayed their meetings.

Calls for Woolf to stand down come not long after Dame Elizabeth Butler-Sloss resigned the role because her brother was attorney-general at the time of the scandal.

Amid fears that the inquiry is losing credibility, May will meet victims groups on Friday to hear their concerns about the appointment. Speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme, Lord Macdonald, a former director of public prosecutions, said Woolf was in a “difficult position” but pointed out that the scope of the inquiry will be difficult for someone willing to take on the role as a replacement to manage.

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