The Executive Office has today announced that every household in Northern Ireland will receive a leaflet outlining the support, services, and compensation available for victims and survivors of historical institutional abuse.
The leaflet, which will be distributed from this week, is the latest phase of an awareness campaign which started in March with the aim of raising awareness of the help available for victims and survivors.
It explains the roles of the Commissioner for Survivors of Institutional Childhood Abuse (COSICA), the Victims and Survivors Service (VSS) and the Historical Institutional Abuse Redress Board (HIARB) and provides contact details for those seeking support.
Denis McMahon, Permanent Secretary at the Executive Office, explained:
“Since its establishment on 31 March 2020, the Historical Institutional Abuse Redress Board (HIARB) has received over 3,700 applications and made award determinations totaling some £68.8 million. But there may be some HIA victims and survivors or their families who are unaware of the help and support that is now available to them, and it is hoped this leaflet drop will provide them with the information they need to get in touch should they wish to do so.”
Alongside the leaflet drop, the Executive Office will also be ensuring posters are on display in GP surgeries, Courts and Jobs and Benefits offices as well as running a dedicated social media campaign.
Dr McMahon added:
“Together, these activities are all part of a concerted effort to reach the often hidden victims and survivors of historical institutional abuse.”
Notes to editors:
- The Northern Ireland Executive’s Inquiry into Historical Institutional Abuse (2014-17) made a range of recommendations, including the establishment of:
- A Commissioner of Survivors of Institutional Childhood Abuse (COSICA);
- Support services for victims and survivors (which are provided by the Victims and Survivors Service (VSS)); and
- A redress scheme, which is managed by the Historical Institutional Abuse Redress Board (HIARB) to consider compensation claims.
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