Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Reprieve for the post of Chief Coroner

Sometimes even campaigning organisations like AvMA, INQUEST and the Royal British Legion can be taken by surprise by its own success.  Faced with the coalition government's mantra 'we have to cut costs because the previous government has left huge debts' it is tempting to shrug one's collective charitable shoulders and see what can be done with the crumbs that are left to us.

In our previous post we set out details of the proposals to abolish key reforms of the coroners system, notably the decision not to appoint a Chief Coroner, not to instigate an appeals process that families could actually use and appoint medical advisers for each Coroner's Court

On Monday a letter appeared in the Times, signed by many charities  (including AvMA, INQUEST and The Royal British Legion) involved in supporting bereaved families and friends at inquests, calling for support to Baroness Finlay's amendment to the Public Bodies Bill removing reference to the abolition of the Chief Coroner.

So we are delighted that yesterday Baroness Findlay's amendment was debated in a packed House of Lords yesterday and passed by 277 votes to 165.

As well as being very pleased that the amendment has been carried and the post of Chief Coroner is again on the agenda we wonder if this is the first defeat of the Coalition Government