12:37, July 02 227 0 theguardian.com

2017-07-02 12:37:02
The independent report into deaths in custody must be delayed no longer

The inquest into Sarah Reed’s death begins on Tuesday. She was found dead in her cell in Holloway prison in London in January 2016 and her relatives will be expecting answers on the level of care she received and her wider treatment by public authorities. In 2012 Sarah was the victim of an assault by a police officer, an experience which aggravated her mental health issues.

The government has accepted that deaths in custody need further scrutiny. Two years ago Theresa May, as home secretary, commissioned an independent review on police custody deaths, including investigating racial disproportionality. The review’s report was due for publication over a year ago.

Until last week the government website on this independent review stated the report will be published “in the summer of 2016”. The continued and unexplained delays suggest the government is holding back on publishing the report.

We therefore call on home secretary Amber Rudd to immediately release the report of the independent review into deaths in police custody.

Families have been calling for transparency and justice on deaths in custody for decades. By releasing the report of the independent review the government can begin to convince bereaved families that it is committed to transparency and justice for the families affected by deaths in custody.

Dr Omar Khan Director, Runnymede Trust

Martha Spurrier Director, Liberty

Daniel Machover Chair, Inquest

Kate Paradine CEO, Women in Prison

Sarah Hughes CEO, Centre for Mental Health

Sam Gurney Head of equality and strategy, Trades Union Congress

Sarah Green Co-Director, End Violence Against Women Coalition

Paul Farmer CEO, Mind

Professor Darrick Jolliffe Former research adviser to the Independent Advisory Panel on Deaths in Custody

Leroy Logan Former chief superintendent (retired)

Duwayne Brooks Stop-and-search consultant

Frances Crook CEO, Howard League for Penal Reform

Siana Bangura Freelance journalist

Donald Peter Herbert Former Metropolitan Police Authority member

Ilyas Nagdee Black Students’ Officer, National Union of Students

Lord Herman Ouseley Independent crossbench, House of Lords

Mark Serwotka General secretary, Public and Commercial Services Union

Zita Holbourne National chair, Barac UK

Jerome Phelps Director, Detention Action

Jon Robins The Justice Gap

Dr Wanda Wyporska Executive director, The Equality Trust

Andy Gregg CEO, Race on the Agenda

Lee Jasper Former adviser on policing in London

Ken Fero Migrant Media

Louise King Director, Children’s Rights Alliance for England

Simon Woolley Director, Operation Black Vote

Yvonne MacNamara Chief executive, the Traveller Movement

Zoe Matthews Co-director, Friends Families and Travellers

Lisa Matthews Coordinator, Right to Remain

Alan Anstead Coordinator, UK Race and Europe Network

Tracey Lazard CEO, Inclusion London

Patrick Vernon Social commentator, film-maker and publisher

Professor Robbie Shilliam Professor in international relations

Sado Jirde Director, Black South West Network

Nadeem Murtuji Chair, Just Yorkshire

Estelle du Boulay Director, Rights of Women

Patricia Lamour Aspire Education Group

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