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The Victims Minister Adam Ingram
"Many victims may have had compensation but they still have other needs"
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Thursday, 22 February, 2001, 07:15 GMT
Cash boost for victims of Troubles
Victims' groups have long campaigned for funding
Victims' groups have long campaigned for funding
Victims' minister Adam Ingram has announced a 12m funding package for victims and survivors of the Troubles in Northern Ireland.

This figure is almost double the amount of government money which has been allocated to these groups to date.

The new money will be spent over three years, beginning in April.

Mr Ingram said that 3m would be allocated to the Northern Ireland Memorial Fund.

He said an announcement on the allocation of the remaining 9m would be made in the coming months, in consultation with Stormont ministers.

Mr Ingram said the money would help build up the important work which is already being done to help victims.

It is important to ensure all funding is used to meet the many needs of victims

Dermot Nesbitt

"This funding will provide sustainability for the victims' community and will build upon the vital work which has already been undertaken since the publication of the Sir Kenneth Bloomfield report in 1998," he said.

He said the funding recognised the need to carry this work forward and the government's "commitment to the needs of victims and survivors".

The announcement has been welcomed by assembly members Denis Haughey of the Social Democratic and Labour Party and Ulster Unionist Dermot Nesbitt.

Mr Haughey said: "The allocation of 12m to victims is welcome news which, I am sure, will give encouragement to both victims groups and individual victims that their plight has not been forgotten.

"We particularly welcome the allocation of 1m per year to the Memorial Fund over the next three years."

Executive contribution

He said the office of the first and deputy first minister would also make a further contribution to the fund.

Mr Nesbitt said: "It is important to ensure all funding is used to meet the many needs of victims.

"To this end we will be meeting with Mr Ingram in the near future to discuss the allocation of the remaining 9m."

Mr Nesbitt pointed out that the executive would be contributing 1.67m to the overall package of approximately 6.67m, which will be available specifically to victims from the Peace II Programme.

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