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‘Bradley shamefully using victims as political pawns’ – O’Neill

15 May, 2019 - by Michelle O'Neill

The British Secretary of State is shamefully attempting to turn victims of historical institutional abuse into political pawns, Sinn Féin Leas Uachtarán Michelle O’Neill has said.

Michelle O’Neill was commenting after Karen Bradley rejected an appeal from the Head of the Civil Service for legislation to compensate victims of historical institutional abuse, instead claiming that it should be a matter for the Stormont negotiations.

Michelle O’Neill said: "Compensation for victims of Historical Institutional Abuse should not be a matter for the political negotiations and Karen Bradley is morally and politically wrong to attempt to make it so.

“This matter was dealt with by the Hart Inquiry, it should have been addressed long before now and a suitable legal and financial framework needs to be in place to begin addressing the needs of victims.

“Not only is British Secretary of State once again abdicating her responsibilities to victims, she is now attempting to turn them into political pawns where their needs become a matter for negotiation.

“That is shameful. Karen Bradley needs to start putting the needs of victims and survivors before her own political priorities and immediately put in place the required legal and financial framework to assist them.

“I have met the Head of the Civil Service today and will be requesting a meeting with the other party leaders to pursue a resolution that meets the needs of victims and survivors.” 

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