Religious orders and institutions "paying lip service" to contributing to redress and recognition of victims of child abuse, says Bradshaw

Alliance Executive Office Spokesperson Paula Bradshaw, has accused religious orders and Institutions of "paying lip service" to making a fair and meaningful contribution to redress and recognition of victims and survivors of historical institutional abuse of children.

Paula Bradshaw Institutional Abuse

Making a member's statement in the Assembly, the South Belfast MLA said: "Since being appointed Chair of the Executive Office Committee I have listened to victims and survivors of historical institutional abuse of children, and I have heard the raw anger and frustration they feel as we continue to fail them. 

"Fourteen years ago the religious orders were put on notice they would be obliged to make a contribution to redress and recognition, and seven years ago this was confirmed when the Hart Inquiry report was published. Yet they have still contributed not a single penny.

"The religious orders and institutions are responsible for causing systematic harm through what were plainly criminal acts, and the victims and survivors want and deserve accountability from them.

"We were advised two months ago two institutions were ready to make contributions and two more were close, yet still there has been no movement and this therefore appears to be little more than lip service.

"There must be a contribution to redress for suffering and abuse perpetrated upon innocent and vulnerable children without further delay. So it is time for us to put them on notice there will be action against them if this does not happen. 

"This is a priority for me and my party and we will not be letting it go until it is resolved to the satisfaction of victims and survivors."