9 March: Professor Phil Scraton (School of Law, Queen’s University Belfast)
Title: Hillsborough: Resisting Injustice, Uncovering Truth
Abstract: 15 April 1989: an inescapable crush on the terraces at Hillsborough Stadium at an FA Cup Semi-Final led to the deaths of 96 men, women and children. Hundreds of Liverpool fans were injured, thousands traumatised. Throughout the investigations and inquiries, those who died and survived were vilified amid police allegations of drunkenness, violence, criminal and abusive behaviour. The families’ unrelenting campaign for truth recovery led to disclosure of all existing documents to an Independent Panel. Its definitive report revealed institutional mendacity, corrupted evidence and partial investigation. This brought an unreserved Government apology, an ongoing criminal investigation into all agencies involved and an unprecedented IPCC investigation into 2,000 police officers. It also led to new inquests, commencing March 2014 through to 2016. Author of the highly acclaimed Hillsborough: The Truth, Phil Scraton, Professor of Criminology, Queen’s University, headed the Panel’s research and was primary author of its report. He has also been advisor to the families’ legal teams throughout the inquests. In this talk he reflects on the long-term campaign for truth, details the Panel’s extensive findings and analyses the new inquests and their outcome. Finally, he examines the impact of his critical research and truth recovery for challenging institutional injustice and holding State institutions to account.
Room: LG04, Bedford Way, UCL