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Magdalene women still waiting for Government to deliver on commitments made five years ago – Mitchell

19 February, 2018 - by Denise Mitchell TD

Sinn Féin Spokesperson for Children and Youth Affairs Denise Mitchell TD has called on the government to deliver outstanding commitments made to Magdalene Laundry survivors on the fifth anniversary of the State Apology by then-Taoiseach Enda Kenny

The Dublin Bay North TD said:

“Five years ago today, Taoiseach Enda Kenny delivered an apology on behalf of the State to the women who were incarcerated and treated so cruelly through the decades in the Magdalene Laundries.

“Today, these women are still waiting for the Government to follow through on a number of commitments made at the time.”

Deputy Mitchell said the Government had committed to implementing the recommendations outlined in Justice Quirke’s report in full:

“The Government committed to deliver the Quirke Report recommendations in full, which has not happened.  No memorial has been delivered on, nor has the staffed consultative unit Mr Justice John Quirke recommended been established to provide for the memorial. That is unacceptable.

“We are seeing now with the proposed sale of former Magdalene sites at Seán McDermott Street and Donnybrook in Dublin, and Sunday’s Well in Cork, the opportunity for an appropriate memorial to be realised. The Government should commit to consultation with women so they can discuss and inform any decision on memorialisation.”

Deputy Mitchell pointed to the Ombudsman’s recent investigation into the Department’s administration of the Magdalene Restorative Justice Scheme which exposed significant flaws including the failure to provide redress entitlements to women who lack capacity to look after their own affairs:

“The Government should also now commit to undertake an independent implementation audit of the Quirke Report recommendations and deliver on outstanding commitments within an agreed timeframe. It is totally unfair that five years on from the state apology, many of these women are still being failed by the State.” 

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