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Denise Mitchell TD expresses concern at delay of Mother and Baby Home final report

13 February, 2018 - by Denise Mitchell TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Children and Youth Affairs, Denise Mitchell TD, has said that the Government must ensure the Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes has all the resources it needs to complete its work in an efficient and timely matter.

Speaking during a debate on the Commission’s Third Interim Report in the Dáil on Tueday evening, which discussed the additional one year extension to the time-frame for the final report, Deputy Mitchell said:

“Unfortunately time is not on our side here. Most the survivors are very elderly. Many fear they will not get the truth and justice they deserve. 

"As we all know, justice delayed is justice denied, so I urge the Government to do all it can to ensure the Commission has whatever resources it needs to complete its work in a timely fashion.”

Deputy Mitchell also called on the Minister to immediately look at the issue of redress for survivors from Bethany Home and similar institutions which were wrongly excluded from the 2002 redress scheme:

“The Government has told these survivors that they will have to wait until after the publication of the final report before redress is considered. The Bethany Homes Survivors Group has described the Government’s position as placing a 'death sentence on justice and truth for many of us'. 

"The Government’s stance here is absolutely wrong and this issue must be addressed urgently.”

Deputy Mitchell welcomed the decision to establish a Collaborative Forum which will include survivors, relatives and campaigners.

She also raised concerns around the sale of former mother and baby homes which may contain burial sites:

“There have been serious concerns raised around whether all the burial sites at former homes like Bessboro, which is up for sale, have been identified.  Development on these sites should not be going ahead until we can be absolutely certain that there are no further burial sites contained on these grounds.”

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