Debates between Lord Faulks and Lord Kamall during the 2019 Parliament

David Fuller Case

Debate between Lord Faulks and Lord Kamall
Tuesday 9th November 2021

(2 years, 7 months ago)

Lords Chamber
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Lord Kamall Portrait Lord Kamall (Con)
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I thank the noble Lord for that suggestion. As far as I understand, the inquiry will be as wide ranging as it can be and wants to include input from as many people and stakeholders as possible who are affected by, or will be affected by, the implications of the investigation. There are already a lot of calls. A number of people have spoken to me today informally, for example, with a number of suggestions, making me recognise how much wider this goes. It is not just about the storage of bodies in hospitals but in other places, including funeral directors’ premises. I am sure that the suggestion will be considered, but I will confirm that.

Lord Faulks Portrait Lord Faulks (Non-Afl)
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My Lords, I welcome the Statement and welcome the inquiry that is to be set up. I hope that lessons will be learned from it. The Minister mentioned the question of compensation and how legal advice was being sought in relation to that. I think that advice will indicate that the law is extremely complex in this area, unsurprisingly perhaps. Of course, it is also complex in the criminal area, as the noble Baroness, Lady Brinton, pointed out.

On the question of civil compensation, there have already been certain stories to the effect that millions of pounds of compensation are going to be obtained. There is the likelihood, I suspect, of there being some great case—as there was, for example, in the Alder Hey body parts litigation, and I declare an interest as being one of the lawyers involved in that. I respectfully suggest that that is not something that will benefit very much all those affected by these dreadful events. I respectfully suggest to the Minister, for consideration by his department, that, rather than embark on long, complex and uncertain litigation, it would be wise to set up a scheme to provide some form of statutory compensation for a set amount which would be an appropriate recompense for these dreadful events.

Lord Kamall Portrait Lord Kamall (Con)
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I thank the noble Lord for that suggestion. As we are all aware, there is a wide range of experience across this House, and it is important that we draw on that when it comes to considering the terms and parameters of the inquiry. The trust and NHS Resolution are considering the right approach to compensation and, as the noble Lord acknowledged, that does involve getting further legal advice. The trust has been quite clear that it will provide support to the families concerned. One of the things that this Statement has brought out is the wide range of experience and the suggestions that have been made by noble Lords for helping the inquiry along. I welcome those suggestions and will feed them back into the department.