Do ye remember the good old days when millions was paid out to soldiers who were exposed to guns being discharged?? (how terrible it mustve been for these soldiers!!)
oh how everyone chuckled at the notion of all this money being paid out!!
Now that we are faced with drastic cutbacks and barracks closures I bet these soldiers arent chuckling this morning???!!
But surely if their hearing was impaired they automatically had to resign from the Army--otherwise they were a danger to themselves and to others and anyone who was compelled to work with them would automatically have a claim against the State for reckless regartd for their safety.
I think that is the reality of it, some were deserving of compensation but methinks a whole lot jumped on the bandwagon.
I have an interest in this.
I am one of the many who had their hearing damaged. On my last hearing check ( about 10 yrs ago ) I had lost 79% overall hearing with 21% residual hearing left. In the language of the hearing specialist I am Hard Of Hearing. In reality I am DEAF.
At the time of my case I was sent to several hearing specialists in Dublin, Cork and Limerick. I had to make statements to solicitors on both sides, barristers were employed by both sides. All, I repeat all cases went through rigourous steps to ensure that they merited a hearing before a judge. Many cases, in spite of the media and the minister for defence Michael Smith, resulted in the state having to pay out huge sums. Only a small amout of cases actually went to a full hearing before a judge, mine was one of those.
Part way through the hearing a false statement by the state was challanged by my barrister. The judge ajourned the case to allow the state to have a rethink about this case.
I was made a substantial offer, which I accepted. I am still DEAF, no one has ever said they are sorry for that damage, no one has ever been prosecuted for that damage. Each and every one of us who made a claim have been villified by the media and the department of defence during M. Smiths time in office.
We were made fun of, a term that was about then was " what about the WHA! money " I wear 2 hearing aids, i suffer from Tinnitus, both have the effect of being very stressful in company. My family as a result also suffer, i am very loud when I talk, it can frighten the grandchildren. For a number of years my wife thought i was ignoring her ( can you imagine the tension ).
I have gotten on with my life, as have most of those who were damaged in this way, any money paid to us in compensation will never be able to replace the difficulties we have had to face and are still facing.
Of a group of 35 men that I knew who made a claim all, I repeat all, were sucessful ( if you can call it that ) in their claims. I have not met one who lost their claim.
Last edited by Tawdy; 16th November 2011 at 12:25 PM.
Reason: Gave the wrong name should be Smith
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