Ex-prisoners disadvantages

Sinn Fein’s Raymond McCartney and Gerry Adams have been to see security minister Paul Groggins to discuss the problems for released terrorists especially in regard to jobs.

Mr. McCartney said: “We drew to Mr Goggins attention the British Secretary of State’s acknowledgement in a recent letter to Gerry Adams that ‘we all have a responsibility to ensure former prisoners are neither legally nor administratively penalised’.
“We pressed the Minister to deal conclusively with this problem. Former political prisoners are too often unable to access employment in government agencies, on statutory boards or in departments which are being run by ex-prisoners who are Government Ministers.”

“The root of this stems from the fact that the law makes no distinction post imprisonment between common criminal activity and arrest, and imprisonment arising from conflict related incidents.”

Mr. McCartney is of course exactly correct in regard to this. The root of the problem is that very many in Northern Ireland do regard the paramilitaries of all sides as simply common criminals and as such unsuitable for a wide range of jobs.
The fact that pensions were raised is also interesting. One wonders whether Sinn Fein feel that those terrorists who served sentences and as such have had less time to earn pensions should receive some sort of “war pension.”

Mr. Groggins has agreed to respond to Sinn Fein on the matter: the outcome should be interesting though whether his view of “A sensible approach to resolving this anomalous situation for those imprisoned” will be to SF’s liking remains to be seen.

Unfortunately “a fresh start for the thousands of ex-political prisoners and their families” is not really open to very many of the ex-prisoners’ victims.

  • Rory

    “Which just goes to show that for some people, the high point of a Slugger thread is the bit where they git to slag off the Alliance Party.”

    If by this statement, Turgon, you intend to infer, in that cloyingly individual twee style that you have developed, that the dead have no pension rights then who is to disagree? The dead do not.

    The dead have no need of them. Yet pension rights accrue to those members of the British armed forces who killed civilians and those undercover state agents of the RUC and British military intelligence who planned and colluded in murders with loyalist murder gangs and republican turncoats, many of whom are yet receiving UK government funding.

    It was the failure of the British state that it permitted all that was rotten in the “state of Denmark” that was Northern Ireland to develop and fester in north-east Ulster and that failure was recognised in the negotiation and acceptance of the Good Friday Agreement.

    Besides which, it’s really all a moot, no-lose demand in the main as Pension Credit would automatically make up for any loss of state pension credits for most afflicted by such loss. But there is no reason why those political ex-prisoners who may have an additional income whereby Pension Credit availability was not applicable should be at any loss as a result of the state’s failure.

  • woe is me

    [edited by moderator – play the ball – yellow card]

  • ulsterfan

    Rory
    Do you think it is a good idea that all those who receive benefits from the British State should give allegiance to that State?

  • barnshee

    “Yet pension rights accrue to those members of the British armed forces who killed civilians and those undercover state agents of the RUC and British military intelligence who planned and colluded in murders with loyalist murder gangs and republican turncoats, many of whom are yet receiving UK government funding. ”

    Prove it sunshine in (nearly) the words of the immortal bard put up or shut up

  • Dave

    Who could fail to appreciate the irony of so-called ‘republicans’ asking for a ‘war’ pension from the British government?

    Is it a reward for ‘services’ to the State like randomly murdering its citizens and public servants in a campaign of anti-State violence aimed at securing self-serving concessions such as pensions, pay-offs, and shiny new pretend political careers or just because they’re a despicable bunch of degenerates who neither have the wit nor dignity to grasp utterly dishonourable such a self-serving request is?

    The State should have hanged these murderers instead of pandering to them – or dispatched them to a war crimes tribunal if it lacked the backbone to deal with them.

  • Dave

    By the way, if these folks want to have their campaign of civil murder reclassified as a ‘war’ in order to gain financial rewards such as ‘pensions’ then let it be so: there is no statute of limitations on war crimes and the relevant Court is not under the control of the British government so those victims who still seek justice may find it from a court that does not collude with the murderers.

  • circles

    Yawnnnn Dave – really, catch yourself on and wipe that foam away from your mouth.

    The interesting thing about this is that it seems there is a whole range of ex-prisoners.

    My favourite are the ex-political prisoners – the ones that used to be political, but are now busy with the politics of filling their pockets and buying property and businesses for themselves and their children, whilst reminding everybody else of the wonders of Ché Guevara. No need for a pension for these chappies – it seems like they have found another source of wealth whilst still managing to be “good” republicans. No doubt though they’d have the hand out too should the British government ever cough anything up.

    On the other hand there have been prisoners who were completely shafted when they got out – Ciarán Nugent and Brendan Hughs being 2 such examples. However here it was the Shinners themselves who saw to their isolation and tried to keep them out of polite republican circles. So here running to the minister wouldn’t have helped – although maybe a grab into the bag that pays for the B&B;’s and shops of the others could have – in the socialist spirit of the re-distribution of wealth, which I’m sure was well studied in the Kesh.

  • Rory

    “Rory
    Do you think it is a good idea that all those who receive benefits from the British State should give allegiance to that State?”

    Certainly not, Ulster Fan. I have always held that we should take everything we could get from them and give them nothing back if possible. Reparations is the operative word.

    Heh, heh! The submit codeword is “England”.

  • ellie

    They don’t deserve jobs or a pension. They are convicted terrorists many of whom murderers; they got a get out of jail free card and now they are reeping what they sowed

  • Rory

    Ah, Ellie, but it is not a question of who deserves or who doesn’t deserve, is it? It is a matter of what in law one is, or one becomes to be, entitled to. As it stands some ex-prisoners have lost some entitlement to pension rights because, it is argued, of their political activity viz their resistance to state injustice.

    Now, following the acceptance of the state that their struggle was a political one and that they were not criminals, the state is quite properly being asked to fully restore any rights lost as a result. And so the state bloody well should, if you ask me – for starters at least!

  • barnshee

    “Now, following the acceptance of the state that their struggle was a political one and that they were not criminals”
    Where was this accepted?
    Give them what they deserve– good idea make them rich enough to be sued by their victims

  • Glencoppagagh

    It’s so easy to despise republicans when they preen themselves as ‘soldiers’ involved in a ‘war’ but are ever ready seek compo and any other available handout from their enemy. Legally possible it may be but honourable it is not.
    “Sure, t’is only in their nature” you might say.

  • Veritas

    As I stated last week re. Conor Murphy:

    EVERYTHING (SF) you do here depends on the British Government, under whatever guise.

    Lucky though that Ray’s conviction was overturned. No problems with his pension.

  • Jimmy Sands

    Leaving aside one’s views of the activities that got them banged up, why should they not look to the organisation that employed them for compensation? It’s not as if they don’t have the money.

  • Jimmy

    Do ex Terrorists deserve some kind of special dispensation as far as finding work is concerned?, while I as a law abiding person should take my chances in the labour market like everyone else?
    There any many people out there who suffer from PTSD,physical injury etc caused by the troubles who cant work due to the IRA phoney war,what about them first?
    Maybe Sinn Fein MLAs can distribute some of that wealth in salaries they recieve to thier former comrades, they have more than enough. They (the IRA) caused thier own woes, let them live with the consequences.

  • harpo

    “Leaving aside one’s views of the activities that got them banged up, why should they not look to the organisation that employed them for compensation? It’s not as if they don’t have the money.”

    Jimmy Sands:

    Exactly.

    I don’t see why the enemy should pay for their pensions. Let their employer pay for whatever they lost out on due to their employer’s decisions.

    I don’t recall HMG paying pensions to former members of the Nazi SS after WW2.

  • harpo

    “Ah, Ellie, but it is not a question of who deserves or who doesn’t deserve, is it? It is a matter of what in law one is, or one becomes to be, entitled to.”

    Rory:

    The rest of your post then goes on to what you think they SHOULD be entitled to, which contradicts what you say above.

    At the moment they aren’t entitled to jack shit under the law. ‘In law’ they get zero, nada, squat.

    That’s what you want isn’t it? For them to get what they are entitled to ‘in law’.

    Suck it up. They lost the conflict and are now begging for scraps from their masters. They are trying to get British law CHANGED so that they get some money.

    Hopefully the law will not be changed and they will get exactly what they are currently entitled to – nothing. That matches what they deserve.

    As Jimmy Sands said, let the PIRA pay their pensions. They operated on behalf of the PIRA didn’t they? As the government of the Irish Republic, shouldn’t that entity pay for the welfare of its ‘soldiers’?

  • circles

    Harpo – you’re a bore and a confused eejit. think you should make up your mind whether the Brits where “the enemy” (post 16) or “their masters” (post 17).
    I’d be all for the same treatment of the murderous RUC, UDR, Special Branch as ex-prisoners get. The illers in these organisation got big fat brit state pensions – and I’m sure in your twisted logic you think that they deserved it.