You can tell the Inquiry about your experiences at what we call a “private session”. A witness statement will be prepared after a private session which records your experiences.
It may take us time to arrange a private session near you. This does not mean that your experiences are not important to us. When we are ready to meet with you, your witness support team contact will get in touch with you to discuss where is easy and safe for you to meet us for a private session.
What happens at a private session:
Three members of the Inquiry team will meet you at the private session. Two are statement takers. They will help you speak about your experiences and memories. Your witness support team contact will also be present. You can go at your own pace and have breaks whenever you want. A private session usually takes a few hours.
You can bring someone to support you at the session – many people do. We want you to feel safe when you speak to us.
Before the session it may help to think through what you would like to speak about, so you can share your experiences to the best of your ability and within the time available.
It helps the Inquiry if you can speak about your life before going into care, your time in care, whether you reported the abuse you tell us about and your life after care. It is up to you how much you want to say about these things.
We record private sessions to help us prepare a clear and accurate witness statement of what you have said at the session.
After your private session your witness support team contact will be available. We will also give you a follow up phone call.
What you tell us will be put into a statement which will be discussed with you at a statement review.