§ Baroness Lane-Fox
asked Her Majesty's Government:
What further action they propose to combat child abuse.
The Earl of Caithness
My right honourable friend intends to issue next month a paper on the use of video technology in trials involving allegations of abuse. The purpose of the paper will be, first, to seek views from outside government on the detailed operation of the scheme provided for in Clause 21 of the Criminal Justice Bill whereby children will be able to give evidence by video link at such trials. Secondly, the paper will discuss whether a change in the law should permit a more widespread use of video recordings of a child as evidence in these trials. Copies will be placed in the Library as soon as the paper is issued.
We also propose to establish a working group of experts with recent experience in the field of child abuse to review recent developments in the investigations by the police of such cases. The object will be to offer guidance to Chief Officers of Police on best practice, having regard both to the need for the efficient investigation of the allegations and the interest of the child.