James Nesbitt Tells Westminister To 'Do Right' By Victims Of The Troubles
Some victims of the Northern Ireland conflict feel as though the Government is punishing them for surviving, a representative has claimed.
James Nesbitt, patron of the WAVE Trauma Centre, in Westminister (Picture: WAVE Trauma Centre).
A Northern Irish actor has called on politicians to "do what is right" and legislate for a special pension for those severely injured during the Troubles in Northern Ireland.
James Nesbitt was speaking to MPs and peers in Westminster where the WAVE Injured Group had brought their photographic exhibition, ‘Injured On That Day'.
“When people say ‘thank God the Troubles are over and we can all get on with our lives’, I can understand that.
"But for those who came through those desperate times relatively unscathed and those for whom they are not even a distant memory, there needs to be a reminder that for many men and women what happened to them is not consigned to the past but is in the here and now.”
Mr Gallagher said it was up to Westminster to act in the absence of devolution in Belfast: "It is the Government's responsibility to go by its own laws that it made.
"It does not need to get caught up in the politics around this place, it just has to look after the victims on the ground and show leadership and show courage and just bring this forward."
He said it was up to the Irish government as co-signatory to the Good Friday Agreement to look after victims: "The two governments need to step up and take on their responsibilities before it is too late."
A UK Government spokesperson said: "The Secretary of State for Northern Ireland has requested advice on a victims' pension from the Commissioner for Victims and Survivors for Northern Ireland, covering both physical and psychological injury.
"We have received some initial advice, which we are considering. It would be premature to set out next steps in advance of receiving further advice expected at the end of this month.
"We look forward to receiving this and to continuing to work with the Victims Commissioner on the way forward."