Since the resitting of Stormont, work has begun moving on areas of Northern Irish politics that may have seemed dormant. Prior to Covid-19, the Festival had begun discussions with the Commission for Victims and Survivors (or CVS), about their work and the Forum they hold, to discuss the legacy of The Troubles and the services that are available for those affected. We were planning events and public discussions; the CVS showed particular interest in our work on dual-heritage Irish lives and the focus we took on In:Visible Women.
The Festival is aware that it is not only people on the island of Ireland that were (or remain) affected by the Troubles. We feel it is important to share details of the Commission’s work and services, but also opportunities that can shape their work. We intend to work with the CVS in coming years, to consider how it identifies with and shapes Irish lives, at home and in diaspora communities, hence our involvement now.
The following is a statement from the Commissioner, Judith Thompson, about the work the CVS is doing, asking for survey contributions –from you- to help shape the strategy of the Commission in future. Please do read the statement.
As the Commissioner for Victims and Survivors, I am looking at how we can better support the many thousands of people who have been impacted by 40 years of the conflict in Northern Ireland. This could be you or someone you know. 1 in 3 people in Northern Ireland have suffered harm as a direct result of the Troubles. The likelihood is, they are a part of your organisation and what you do will already impact them. We all have a part to play – to build a better future. I would be very grateful if you could take some time to complete this survey and share your thoughts.
Accurate, incisive and informed views and experiences from Groups, Individuals, Families and Friends is essential to mapping out how we make that future work for everyone. This survey will provide vital evidence to help us shape the roadmap to the future. I can assure you that what you share will help other people. The results of this survey will influence the advice I will give to government on what is the best way forward in a new Strategy to deliver services and support to victims and survivors today and in the future.
If you have any questions or would like further information on this survey, the Commission’s Research and Policy Officer, Leah McDonnell will be happy to help you. Leah can be contacted by emailing [email protected] or by telephone on +44 (0) 28 9031 1000.
Your voice coupled with our learning from the past 10 years will provide government the expert knowledge of the road left to travel. Together we are working towards a common goal: a future that offers peace for all. Thank you for your interest and support and I look forward to your response. Yours sincerely,