Alliance MLA Paula Bradshaw has called on the Head of the Civil Service to initiate a consultation on delivering the recommendations into historical institutional abuse here.
Secretary of State Karen Bradley has stated it would be “inappropriate” for her to approve compensation payments to victims and survivors of the abuse, as outlined in Sir Anthony Hart’s Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry report in January 2017. However, she added she would consider any proposals from the Head of the Civil Service relating to the inquiry.
“While there has been much media commentary on the Secretary of State’s refusal to legislate for the redress scheme, there is a stage before this the Executive Office could be getting on with – I am calling on David Sterling, Head of the Civil Service, to get on with conducting a consultation process into the recommendations of the inquiry report,” said Ms Bradshaw.
“Through this consultation process the victims and survivors, their families and others will have an opportunity to respond to the recommendations, particularly the redress scheme, and shape the subsequent enabling legislation. Despite the political impasse, it does not mean the Executive Office could not be engaging in this process.
“It is completely shameless this time is not being used wisely. The legislation can be debated and taken through the either Westminster or Stormont when the consultation process has ended, and the civil servants have been able to use the input to shape the final mechanisms of the redress scheme.
“In the meantime, we call again on the Secretary of State to issue the public apology recommended by Sir Anthony Hart in his Inquiry Report 14 months ago. I believe it is the very least she could do at this time.”