Northern Ireland

Disability pensions 'on agenda'

Bertha McDougall
Image caption Bertha McDougall will raise the issue with the Justice Minister David Ford

Victims commissioner Bertha McDougall will raise the issue of police disability pensions when she meets the Justice Minister David Ford on Monday.

Some officers, who were injured during the troubles, are claiming their pensions are being withdrawn unfairly.

It is understood there are currently around 150 cases under appeal.

The Department of Justice is to be asked to examine the appeals process surrounding the pensions.

The company carrying out the assessments, Capita, has said the system is independent.

The cases have been reviewed as part of a regular reassessment.

Bertha McDougal said the issue must be addresed promptly.

"We cannot leave people in a state of trauma whereby they don't know where they are turning to next or what is going to happen," she added.

"And their families, I must emphasis again, not just the individuals, their families, they are all suffering and under that trauma and it is very very difficult and complicated."

The Victims Commissioner also welcomed plans to review the appeals system.

"Jimmy Spratt has indicated there will be a review and that review needs to take place," she said.

"There's the seriously injured, carers, many many issues around that.

"It won't go away and it must be adequately and properly addressed within a timescale for individuals."