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Counsel assisting the Cervical Screening Inquiry

Release from Counsel assisting the Cervical Screening Inquiry

14 December 1999

THE CONCERNS of the people of Gisborne and other areas of the East Cape are not being overlooked by the team inquiring into cervical screening, Royden Hindle, counsel assisting the inquiry, says.

"The Commission will not be overlooking the legitimate concerns of those women, their families and whanau in the area who have been most directly affected by the under-reporting of cervical smears which led to this inquiry," Mr Hindle, one of two counsel assisting the inquiry, said.

"As counsel assisting the commission we will be holding further discussions in Gisborne with those who have registered their interest in the inquiry. Additionally the Commission is exploring holding hui elsewhere in the East Cape area so it can take account of the views of people further north."

The inquiry team will start formal hearings on Monday 7 February in Auckland.

Mr Hindle said the choice of venue reflected the fact that six of seven terms of reference for the inquiry related to the cervical screening programme on a national basis.

"Only one of them - and I am not in any way downplaying its importance - requires the Commission to look at factors which led to the under-reporting of cervical smears in Gisborne."

"Consideration of that, together with the submissions made at public meetings and the registrations of interest received, have led the Commission to believe it logical to be based in Auckland."

"This does not mean the Commission will not be talking further with people in Gisborne," Mr Hindle said.

For more information contact Royden Hindle Tel: 09 3777958

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