Stephanie's letter to Minister Stephen Barclay MP urging him to bring forward the public inquiry into the handling of the COVID-19 Pandemic

I recently met with COVID-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, a brave group who lost loved ones due to the pandemic – and how it was handled.

With restrictions eased and all eligible ages offered a vaccine, there is no reason for delay.

The inquiry should begin immediately.

I wrote the following letter to the Rt Hon Stephen Barclay MP, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster, on 6 October in relation to the upcoming public inquiry.


Dear Minister,

I am writing with regard to the upcoming public inquiry into the handling of the COVID-19 pandemic.

I recently met with the COVID-19 Bereaved Families for Justice, a brave campaign group made up of those who have lost loved ones as a result of the pandemic. Through their collective voice, it has become clear that, whilst the Government’s announcement of a public inquiry is welcome, the name for justice and closure is urgent, and cannot wait until the proposed start date of Spring 2022.

Without an independent and open inquiry to provide answers about the handling of the pandemic, bereaved loved ones have not been afforded the opportunity to come to terms with, or truly understand, their losses. Likewise, the opportunity for our nation to grieve what it has lost, has been put on hold.

Further, any delay in learning lessons from the handling of the COVID-19 pandemic risks a repeat of such a crisis, should the virus mutate in a dangerous way between now and Spring 2022, or we be mat with another major risk to public health.

This is not an issue of party politics. With restrictions eased and all eligible age categories having been offered vaccination, there is no reason not to bring the inquiry forwards, starting as immediately as possible.

To ensure accountability, I would also recommend that the Government be transparent on the progress it is making towards beginning the inquiry. This would include making public any advancements on defining the terms of reference, appointing a chair, and organising logistical elements such as sending advance requests for documents.

For the sake of those whose grief depends on it, and for the future prosperity of our country’s health, I urge you to ensure that the public inquiry is brought forward and that progress towards it beginning is made transparent. I look forward to your reply on this matter.

Yours sincerely,

Stephanie Peacock MP

Member of Parliament for Barnsley East

Link to Instagram Link to Twitter Link to YouTube Link to Facebook Link to LinkedIn Link to Snapchat Close Fax Website Location Phone Email Calendar Building Search