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  1. ITV Report

Bradley ‘not shying away’ on compensation for victims

Karen Bradley spoke during Northern Ireland Questions. Credit: UTV

The secretary of state has rejected suggestions she is delaying redress for victims of historical institutional abuse.

Karen Bradley told Parliament she will act as quickly as possible, and was not shying away from the issue.

Meanwhile Prime Minister Theresa May said she understands the "extent of concern", but that this is a devolved matter to be dealt with.

It comes after the DUP MP Nigel Dodds described delays in paying compensation to the victims in Northern Ireland as an "outrage".

The inquiry into historical institutional abuse, published by Sir Anthony Hart in 2017, included payments of up to £10,000 among its recommendations.

However the collapse of Stormont meant nothing happened.

Two years later, a document containing final responses from the Executive Office on the HIA consultation process - seen by UTV - has fueled fears that, without emergency legislation, victims may have to wait longer still for compensation.

According to the document’s blunt assessment, it is likely “that it will be at least another one to two years before the Redress Board (recommended within the HIA report) is operational”.

Speaking at PMQs, Nigel Dodds said: "The fact of the matter is many of them are dying without seeing the compensation come through."

Theresa May said it would be a matter for the Executive to deal with but as there is currently none in place, Karen Bradley will look into it.

Ms Bradley said, earlier: "I do not shy away in any way from my responsibilities in this area and I am determined we will act as soon as we can.”