Tuam site must be secured as a crime scene - Mary Lou McDonald TD
Sinn Féin Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald has said the site in Tuam where human remains have been found should be secured as a crime scene immediately.
Teachta McDonald said the response of state agencies to the discovery of the mass grave has been completely inadequate.
Speaking from Leinster House today she said;
“The terms of reference for the commission of investigation to inquire into Mother and Baby Homes has never been adequate. Sinn Féin pointed out the inadequacies in our submission to the proposed commission in July 2014. I will be forwarding this submission again to the Taoiseach and Justice Minister this week.
“It is now beyond question that, at the very least, the terms of reference for the commission need to be redrafted and that all institutions must be included.
“The response of state agencies to the discovery of this mass grave has been completely inadequate. The site needs to be secured immediately as a crime scene and those responsible for this atrocity need to be held criminally accountable.
“The Garda Commissioner should make a statement on the progress of the investigation including whether or not there are adequate resources allocated to it.
“We also need legal protections for victims and their families when they engage with the commission of inquiry. As it stands any statement given to the commission by victims and their families are in no way admissible in any other legal setting such as hearings in relation to compensation. This, in my view, is simply a cruel mechanism to help protect the state from any legal liabilities.
“Similarly, Túsla and the HSE have been doing everything in their power legally to block victims from accessing truth and justice.
“I will be writing to An Taoiseach this week to outline Sinn Fein’s strongly held views on this matter and what needs to be done to get to the truth. I will also be calling on him to ensure that the Minister for Justice publishes the commission’s second interim report which has been on her desk since September 2016.”