The Archdiocese of Birmingham hearing at the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse (IICSA) has concluded with a final day of evidence on Thursday 13 December.

Six days of evidence have now been heard. The report is due in summer 2019.

Independent reviews (available on the IICSA website) commissioned by the Archdiocese identified and highlighted some areas of current diocesan practice which require significant improvement.

Without delay we have brought in additional expertise with the formation of the new role of Interim Director of Safeguarding Improvement, Andrew Haley, who is due to start on Monday 19 November. To assure our necessary rapid improvement and to ensure best practice, a further independent audit will be commissioned in six months’ time.

To deal with some immediate recommendations, a safeguarding consultant and former Local Authority Designated Officer (LADO) has been engaged to rectify safeguarding records and ensure all appropriate steps have been taken to safeguard children. This process is nearing completion.

If you would like to speak to someone about safeguarding and the Church’s work, please call 0121 230 6240.

We would also like to draw your attention to NAPAC – the National Association for People Abused in Childhood, which exists to support adults who were abused in childhood. They run a free phone support line 5 days a week, run support groups for survivors (funds permitting) and regularly contribute to the debate about how best to protect our children. The free phone number is 0808 801 0331