26 April 2018
More than 1,000 members of the public took part in the consultation to decide the future of the former Haut de la Garenne children’s home.
The ten-week Island-wide consultation, which began on 8 February, has now closed. The process was launched in response to the Independent Jersey Care Inquiry’s recommendation that the site should be demolished.
Initial results show that more than 950 people completed or part-completed the consultation questionnaire and dozens of others attended drop-in sessions, focus groups and engaged through social media. A total of 20% of responses were completed using the printed questionnaire booklet and 80% were submitted online.
Any final responses left with Parish halls and other public spaces will be collected this week.
During the consultation period, nine drop-in sessions were held across the Island at Parish Halls and Jersey Library. Two open afternoons were also held at the former Haut de la Garenne site, which is now home to the Jersey Accommodation and Activity Centre.
Respondents were able to complete the consultation questionnaire in English or French. This was to enable the French schools which use the Jersey Activity and Accommodation Centre to take part.
Andrew Heaven, Director of Children’s Policy, who was involved in leading the consultation process, said: “Representatives of survivors of abuse and care leavers were also contacted as part of this consultation to inform them of the process. The Island-wide consultation involved several drop-in sessions at public venues across the Island, as well as two independently facilitated focus groups which explored the arguments for and against demolition.
“A report will now be prepared, summarising the consultation responses, which will be presented to the new Council of Ministers in early July and published shortly afterwards.”
The Council of Ministers will need to decide whether or not to action the IJCI recommendation that the building should be demolished. If the States Assembly were to agree to pursue demolition, the Minister for Infrastructure would need to lodge a planning application, which would be considered through the normal planning process.
As a listed building situated in the Green Zone, a planning application would need to demonstrate that there is an exceptional reason to demolish the former children’s home. Any such application would need to be determined either by the Planning Committee or a Planning Inquiry led by an independent inspector.