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Refusal by Magdalene religious order to contribute financially to redress unacceptable - McDonald

16 July, 2013 - by Mary Lou McDonald TD

Sinn Féin Deputy Leader Mary Lou McDonald TD has this morning sought a Dáil debate on the refusal of the four religious orders that ran the Magdalene Laundries to make a financial contribution to the redress scheme recently put in place for the surviving women.

The Dublin Central TD said:

“It is absolutely unacceptable that the Congregation of the Sisters of Mercy, Religious Sisters of Our Lady of Charity of Refuge, the Sisters of Charity and Sisters of the Good Shepard have refused to financially contribute to the Magdalene laundries redress fund.

“The bottom line is these four religious orders, and the State, were responsible for the effective wrongful incarceration of girls and women who were forced to work for no pay within a brutal regime. 

“Agreeing to merely hand over records and look after elderly residents who gave their lives to the laundries falls far short of what is expected by way of a contribution from the religious orders.

“It is my intention to write to the four religious orders to ask that they reconsider their decision, and instead make a contribution to the Magdalene redress fund that at the very minimum reflects the financial contribution the women made to the commercial enterprises of the orders.

“I have also sought a debate under today’s Topical Issues to facilitate the Minister for Justice to provide details to the Dáil of his discussions with the four religious orders who ran the Magdalene Laundries.”

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