ON Monday, November 8, Justice Minister David Ford published details of a £20 million gratuity scheme for members of the part-time police reserve.
It will be open to former members of the RUC part-time reserve, and current or past members of the PSNI part-time reserve who joined before the end of October 2009.
The surviving spouse or partner of a deceased officer may also be eligible to apply.
The money is part of the government's financial deal for the devolution of policing and justice. Ford said the "payments are to be made in recognition of the particular circumstances of those who volunteered to serve" in the reserve.
He then went on to say "they had made themselves vulnerable within the community for the safety of others, with the accompanying risks and the demonstration of civic spirit which that volunteering exhibited."
Democratic Unionist MP Jeffrey Donaldson, who was involved in negotiating the payment, said, " The part-time reserve officers deserve this recognition.”
Time after time families have looked on in dismay as those who killed their loved ones are glorified as heroes.
When will their loved ones be recognized for what they were? Totally innocent victims who were murdered by the state.
Their families are not looking for a recognition payment. They are looking for the truth, a truth which costs nothing.
Belfast, Northern Ireland
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