MID ULSTER Unionist MLA, Sandra Overend, has backed injured PSNI officer, Peadar Heffron, in his appeal to have the decision to deny him industrial compensation for his injuries overturned.
The Mid-Ulster MLA said: “The decision to turn down Peadar Heffron’s claim for industrial injury compensation sends out a negative message to PSNI officers.
“In Northern Ireland our police officers lives are under constant threat, so it is remarkable that the criteria for compensation does not take this into account.’
“It is insulting to Mr Heffron that he should be turned down on the technicality of whether he was actually on duty or not as he was making his way to work on that morning. He was targeted by dissident republicans because he was a PSNI officer, regardless of whether he was considered to be on duty or not. The nature of a police officer’s job is around the clock and the Ulster Unionist Party would support Mr Heffron’s position that he was on duty on the morning he was targeted.’
“Sadly in the last few years dissident republicans have targeted a number of officers, it is vital that PSNI officers and their families have reassurance that should they be injured, indeed in Peadar’s case to the degree were he may have to retire, that they will be entitled to adequate support to meet their needs.”