York Central MP, Rachael Maskell, expressed her disappointment that the Queen’s Speech (18/05) did not include the Guardianship of a Missing Person Bill, known as ‘Claudia’s Law’.
The Bill would have helped families, like Claudia Lawrence’s, who have been unable to manage the financial and housing affairs of loved ones who have disappeared. Families find themselves having to deal with mounting pressure from banks, building societies and other financial institutions, who will not cancel direct debits etc or deal with other issues without consent from the customer, adding more distress and anxiety to already distraught families. The new bill would have created a mechanism for dealing with the property and affairs of missing people.
Last year, the Government said they ‘very strongly’ supported the creation of a new legal status of guardian, and was ‘committed to bringing forward legislation to give it effect as soon as possible’.
Rachael Maskell says:
“Yet again the Queen’s Speech has not brought much hope for the people of York. One of the biggest disappointments is the omission of Claudia’s Law. The Conservatives said they would bring this in after the General Election and now they have left it out of their first two Queen’s Speeches.
“I am extremely disappointed the Government have not made introducing the Guardianship of a Missing Person Bill a priority. Families like Claudia’s are in an incredibly distressing situation without having to face additional pressure and obstacles from financial institutions. I will continue to press the Government on this.”