3 April 2003 Edition

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Supporting all victims

Sinn Féin Assembly members Bairbre de Brún and Sue Ramsey publicly launched the Relatives for Justice information pack, Supporting Your Journeyí on Tuesday morning at the RFJ offices in Belfast.

Speaking at the launch, Bairbre de Brún said: "Pain and loss is not restricted to one section of our society or one community. It resonates across all boundaries and division. Groups like Relatives for Justice and Shankill Stress can help break down that feeling of isolation that those who have suffered loss or injury can experience. They can help victims and survivors see that they are not alone.

"The Relatives for Justice information pack provides a valuable resource for individuals and groups working through the pain of loss created by this conflict."

Sue Ramsey said that Relatives for Justice is unique in that it addresses all the experiences of the community. "It does not shy away from the harsh realities of what conflict has meant in areas like West Belfast, Derry or Tyrone. We need to appreciate what the effects of bereavement, injury, house raids, imprisonment and censorship has meant and continues to mean to those who are still hurting and in need of support. I congratulate Relatives for Justice on its pioneering work, particularly in light of institutional resistance to the rights of all victims.

"Victims and survivors have been let down by the state. They feel the inadequacy of state services in meeting their specific needs. The state needs to learn from the work of Relatives for Justice and needs to put proper resources for support in place."

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