Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 25 November 2014

Ministers announce appointment of the Victims and Survivors Service Board

Stormont Executive press release - Office of the First and Deputy First Minister

First Minister the Rt. Hon. Peter D Robinson, MLA and deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness, MLA have announced the appointment of Mr Peter Gay as Chairperson to the Board of the Victims and Survivors Service. 

Ministers also announced the appointment of Bertha McDougall, Richard Solomon and Oliver Wilkinson as Board members.

Welcoming the appointments the First Minister said: “We are pleased to announce the appointment of the Chair and members to the Board of the Victims and Survivors Service. 

“The Victims and Survivors Service provides vital support services, identifying specific needs and directing funding at both an individual and group level.”

The deputy First Minister said: “With over £50million committed to the Victims Support Programme over the current budget period, the Board has a crucial role in overseeing and ensuring a high standard of service which victims and survivors expect but more importantly deserve.”

The new Chair and Board are appointed from 2 December 2013.

Notes to editors:

1. The principle aims of the Victims and Survivors Service are:
· to assess the individual needs of victims and survivors, as identified by the Victims and Survivors (Northern Ireland) Order 2006, and deliver a tailored package of care and support to meet those needs; and
· to administer funding to organisations that provide services and support.

2. The appointment of Chair attracts a salary of £5,600 per annum and a Board member £125 per day up to £3000 per annum. The term of appointment is for four years with the possibility of one renewal for a further period of four years.

3. Biographies:

Peter Gay has been a self employed consultant since 2006. He has been Chair of the Cedar Foundation since 2008 and UK Chair of Investing in Volunteers since 2010. Peter’s previous career includes periods in the manufacturing, academia and consultancy sectors.

Bertha McDougall was a Commissioner for Victims and Survivors from 2008-2012. Her previous roles include holding the Interim Commissioner role for Victims and Survivors from 2004-2006 and for ten years was the Chair of Forgotten Families.

Richard Solomon has fifteen years experience in the private sector where he held the post of Managing Director of a multi location retail operation. He then trained as a solicitor and is currently a practising barrister in Northern Ireland. In addition Richard was a parent Governor of a large grammar school in Belfast from 2004-2007.

Oliver Wilkinson has approximately twenty years senior management experience in the voluntary sector, firstly as CEO of Victim Support NI from 1992- 2002 and CEO of Discovery 80 Ltd from 2002-2011. Oliver is also a founding member of Healing Through Remembering.

4. All appointments are made on merit and political activity plays no part in the selection process. However, the Commissioner for Public Appointments for Northern Ireland requires the political activity of the appointees to be published. None of the appointees has declared any political activity in the last five years.

5. Whilst the appointments are not regulated by the Commissioner for Public Appointments for Northern Ireland, they were made in the “spirit” of the Code of Practice issued by the Commissioner.

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