Mr Eastwood slammed the failure of parties to agree to a compensation scheme for victims and survivors after he tabled proposals for such a mechanism when the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry legislation was passed at Stormont.
The HIA inquiry chair Sir Anthony Hart recommended in January 2017 that victims of abuse were entitled to compensation.
But on Wednesday, Karen Bradley point blank refused to move legislation before Westminster, saying it should be dealt with by the parties in the political talks process.
Said the Foyle MLA: “Victims and survivors have had to publicly recount horrific experiences of physical, mental and emotional abuse of the course of decades.
“The process has been traumatic but their strength and resilience has been immense.
“It is an act of cowardice and bad faith to exploit their pain and the public support for their cause in an attempt to force a political outcome.
“The Secretary of State is wrong to use those who have suffered so much as political pawns.
“But let me be clear – all parties had an opportunity to guarantee victims and survivors access to a compensation scheme.
“I tabled amendments to the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry legislation at Stormont that would have provided the Inquiry with the opportunity to publish an interim report on requirements for redress to be taken forward.
“The DUP, Sinn Féin and UUP opposed those proposals.
“Parties must unite to support the recommendations of the Hart report. Victims and survivors of institutional abuse cannot wait any longer.
“The SDLP has always supported them. We will continue to fight their corner,” added Mr Eastwood.