Crucial other victims and survivors aren’t let down as well, says Bradshaw

Alliance MLA Paula Bradshaw has welcomed the appointment of a new Chair for an inter-departmental working group on historical child abuse involving Magdalene Laundries and mother and baby homes.

Peter McBride will take up the position for the working group, which was established by the Department of Health and the Executive Office, and works on historical clerical abuse which falls outside the remit of the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) Inquiry.

“The working group has been without a Chair since March 2018 and while I recognise Departmental officials have been doing their best, this appointment is crucial as we reach the end of the externally-commissioned research into mother and baby homes,” said Ms Bradshaw.

“Queen’s University and others have been conducting this research over the last year into such institutions in Northern Ireland over the period 1922 to 1999. Given the impact on victims and survivors from the ongoing delay in delivering on the recommendations of the HIA Inquiry, it is essential Mr McBride is given the full support of officials to receive this research and ensure the findings are scrutinised, and recommendations considered with the utmost urgency.

“We cannot have a repeat of HIA. We cannot let another body of people waiting for justice and recognition for the abuse and neglect to be let down. I have written to the Executive Office to impress this point and will continue to press hard over the coming weeks and months.”