“Without Records, Accountability Is Denied”


From top:  Carmel McDonnell-ByrneDr Mary Lodato, Eileen Molloy, Catriona Crowe, and Dr Fred Logue, from FP Logue Solicitors

Further to a post this morning about today’s meeting of the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Education and Skills…

During which survivors, lawyers, historians and archivists spoke against a bill which proposes to seal millions of abuse records from survivors and the public for at least 75 years…

Lawyer Cassie Roddy Mullineaux, who followed the proceedings, noted:

Eileen Molloy’s powerful opening statement: “I don’t think our personal information can be used as history in the future, it’s our history now, and should be made available to us while we’re still alive”.

Mary Ledato: “If we don’t confront our past we are condemned to repeat it”

Mary Ledato: “Survivors still live with shame and secrecy imposed on them. They need a process of healing and reconciliation.”

Maeve O’Rourke: “Without records, accountability is denied.”

Fred Logue: One thing is certain – the Retention of Records Bill will delay access to personal data and this will have a significant effect on survivors!

Maeve O’Rourke: “Everyone has a right to their personal data – unredacted!”

Mary Harney: “When I first held my birth certificate in my hand, I jumped up and down and said ‘I am someone, I am.. !'”

Maeve O’Rourke: “Redress means accountability, ideally in court, but also truth telling at a national level. The Right to Truth is not just an individual right but also a societal right. There must be a guarantee of non-repetition!”

Eileen Molloy: “I’m going to die before the 75 years are up – so will my children and grandchildren. Just tell me why you are doing this to me?”

Carmel McDonnell-Byrne: “I get the feeling I’ve been heard for the first time in my life, but I hope this doesn’t fall on deaf ears.”

Earlier: “They Don’t Want The Files And Testimonies To Be Kept Secret”


After the meeting, the committee released the following statement:

“The Joint Committee on Education and Skills heard evidence this morning from wide range of witnesses – including perspectives from legal, historical and human rights backgrounds – on a Bill that would seal records of redress bodies for 75 years.

However, particularly poignant evidence given was from survivors who outlined, in a deeply moving way, the impact this Bill would have on them personally.

The Select Committee on Education and Skills was due to consider the Retention of Records Bill (2019) at a meeting next week.

But Deputies have now agreed to defer consideration of the Bill and are now seeking a response from the Minister for Education and Skills on concerns raised by survivors of institutions and legal experts about the legislation.

Chair of the Committee on Education and Skills, Deputy Fiona O’Loughlin said: “We had excellent engagement with survivors and legal experts on the proposed legislation at a meeting of the Joint Committee earlier today.

“We will be forwarding the Minister a summary of what we heard and we will be seeking a response from him addressing a number of the key issues raised.”

The Bill provides for records from the work of the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse (Cica), the Residential Institutions Redress Board, and the Residential Institutions Redress Review Committee to be in the National Archives of Ireland (NAI) and sealed for a minimum of 75 years.

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10 thoughts on ““Without Records, Accountability Is Denied”

  1. Dr.Fart

    who’s doing this? i’d ask why, but i presume they want to hide records because they don’t want to pay out to survivors anymore. can someone steer me clear on this please?

    1. some old queen

      The Department of Children is doing it – TULSA also got a mention but as to why- that question was asked repeatedly.

  2. Johnny Keenan

    Nothing to see here #Ignoreland

    Rape and buggery away. Society has turned a blind eye for decades.
    Harbouring paedophiles is the normal thing to do.

    Survivors of clerical and state abuse will be dead soon anyway. Due to old age, alcohol abuse, heroin or suicide.
    Just keep ignoring the realty and dont forget to keep voting in the establishment Conservative christian political parties that oversee all this cover up. Fine Gael and Fianna Fail.

    Fightin Irish indeed.

    1. some old queen

      What is worse is an accusation was made that Noonan stuck a deal to have the documents destroyed? Lizard.

      According to one of the lawyers- it is actually illegal so not even well thought true but there was speculation that it is intended to set a precedent for other similar cases- like the mother and babies. Those people are sociopaths- zero empathy.

      1. Johnny Keenan

        The most heinous crime in this state.
        Nothing and no one can move forward unless there is united outrage over this.

  3. White Dove

    Crazy to seal these … imagine trying to seal Holocaust records, same principle applies.

    Sheer badness then and now.

  4. Disgusted by Ireland's corruption

    The Deep State is active in corrupt Ireland, trying to bury the documents as they try to hide their crimes. This is a century-long holocaust of disappeared children and women – tortured, incarcerated, starved, beaten, worked to death, prevented from ever seeing their family members again. Ireland is still a dark place and it suits the Irish government to blame the Church for STATE-sanctioned crimes against humanity. The Church was utilised by the Irish State and the apparatus of the State (lawyers, doctors, nurses, police, civil servants, politicians and the whole of Irish society) to incarcerate thousands of women and children. The Irish State owes all survivors compensation for the crimes committed against them. What a horrific place is Ireland! Double standards and a political class with no accountability.

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