This Cannot Stand

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From top: Outside the former Mother and Baby home in Tuam, county Galway; Mairead Enright

This morning.

Further to the publication by 25 academics of an alternative executive summary to the Mother and Baby Homes Commission of Investigation final report…

…one of its authors, Mairead Enright writes:

‘The Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes concluded that primary responsibility for the treatment of unmarried women and girls and their children lay with their own families and with their children’s fathers. Our approach required us to reassert the primacy, in law, of State responsibility for addressing human rights abuses.

Here are just three examples of differences between the commission’s reasoning and ours.

The commission suggests that children who did not spend long in an institution are unlikely to have been abused. By contrast we recognise forced separation from a parent as a harm in itself. We also highlight the particular vulnerability of young children, who may suffer greatly even from brief periods of institutionalisation because they are completely dependent on adults and unable even to attempt escape.

The commission dismisses claims related to maltreatment in childbirth by referring to the presence of trained medical staff in the institutions. We recognise that the experience of giving birth in an institution may be inhuman and degrading where one is totally under the control of the institution’s staff, subject to regular punishment and emotional abuse and perhaps very young and separated from all other support structures.

The commission insists that “forced” adoption was not a serious issue in the institutions. We unpack its narrow use of the word “force”, taking seriously the many social and emotional pressures that made resistance to adoption almost impossible for unmarried Irish women, well into the 20th century.’

Alternative Executive Summary here.

Why mother and baby homes report findings cannot be let stand (Mairead Enright, Irish Times)

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3 thoughts on “This Cannot Stand

  1. Janet, dreams of an alternate universe

    why is it so difficult to have the good grace to admit wrong, apologies and make what retribution of any is possible,
    it’s just insult to injury

    Reply
    1. Ragamuffin

      Yes and I’d go so far as to call it a form of abuse. Their testimonies have been changed & twisted to protect the church & state. Fair play to all the campaigners & researchers trying to set the record straight.

      Reply
  2. Derek Linster

    They were Just Gangsters , that hope to get a way ,with it knowing that the Irish State & the Catholic Church & the Protestant Church of Ireland also want to keep all this up & now & then they put up people Like Judge Murphy , who is very happy to help to , still lead The Irish Survivors & the people of Ireland like they have done for the last 100 years

    Reply

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