The Shame of Ireland
The Government was told to scrap its pledge on the cost of the child abuse redress scheme before the most powerful religious order in education would discuss school patronage.
The demand was revealed in newly released records of a three-year stand-off between the State and congregations covered by the indemnity deal.
The Government’s original plan had been to pursue the transfer of school properties from religious orders to bridge a perceived €500m shortfall in contributions to the redress scheme. The Sisters of Mercy said no.
The 2011 Programme for Government said the transfers would be used to get the orders to cover 50% of the €1.5bn redress bill.
In July, Education Minister Ruairi Quinn got Cabinet approval for a more conciliatory tack that would allow congregations to remain in control of schools but relinquish title to the land.
According to a policy proposal put to Mr Quinn in February, the new strategy was designed to move the schools’ property debate away from the battle to get congregations to accept the 50:50 redress bill principle.
The softer stance came after more than three years of fractious negotiations which commenced following the publication of the Ryan Report.
The correspondence between Mr Quinn, his department, and the 18 orders covered under the indemnity deal has now been deemed eligible for release under the Freedom of Information Act. These revealed the frosty exchanges between the sides.
The most significant struggle involved the Sisters of Mercy, which owns 96 schools worth €281m and which transferred a further 66, worth €412m, to the Ceist religious trust.
It made an additional offer of €20m towards the new statutory fund, and property it valued at €107m. This offer was dismissed as inadequate and overvalued.
Following meetings with the department, the order wrote a letter making it clear its voluntary contribution in response to the Ryan Report “was not a matter for negotiation”.
It said it would not participate in any attempt by the State to revalue its post-2009 offer and it wanted the Programme for Government changed.
“We are not willing to enter negotiations with Government towards its fulfilment of school infrastructure which it made in its Programme for Government for the transfer of school infrastructure,” the order wrote.
In a memo to Mr Quinn, department officials said the compromised proposal, to transfer school sites without changing control, had been put to the 18 orders. Fifteen did not respond and the three that did express an interest only owned 16 schools between them.
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved
i am sure many people would agree with our post John!
the church is a guilty party in all of this and in no position to be dictating anything! does the church fund political parties (government of the day)?
Now THAT is an interesting question. I know they get some of them a bit cheaper than that. Let me show you how dirty it really gets.
I have been been involved in, and following the consultation on sex work legislation. The orders only have three token sex workers they can field (because the rest will not have anything to do with them, apparently "fallen women" do not find rescue by religious order terribly interesting ) one of these Justine Reilly, turned out to be far from the helpless little victim she frequently portrayed herself as in the media, but rather a triple convicted former pimp.
This is where it gets interesting - on February 6 2013 (before her real identity was discovered) Justine Reilly gave evidence to the Justice Committee including the following statement (it is in the report http://www.oireachtas.ie/parliament/media/committees/justice/1.Part... ):
"told the Committee of time she had spent working in a brothel which she understood to be owned and operated by a subversive organisation"
On February 24 Reilly's real identity was discovered and disclosed on Twitter, followed by a disgraceful display by Sinn Fein Justice spokesman (in front of whom the above statement had been made) Padraig McLoughlan (don't worry, there are plenty of screenshots to back this!) attacking and insulting anyone who tried to tell the truth about Reilly.
This is strange because, up to that point, McLoughan even had a PA who worked with a sex worker rights organisation (which means AGAINST the orders and "Turn Off the Red Light"). McLoughlan's history is interesting as he is a relatively young, new TD who's father was convicted the ill-fated Coventry Exchange Bombing that killed his fellow bomber McDaid and became the touch paper for the Birmingham Pub bombings.
I have always been pretty Republican, but, just on a human level, I would have thought someone with his history would have been inclined to be defensive against Reilly's statement rather than so irrationally defensive of the person who made it, less than 3 weeks later.
On March 13 former Sinn Fein TD Peter Pringle, from an adjoining constituency to McLoughlin, who's father was also a convicted IRA member, brought a private members bill in support of the orders and "Turn Off the Red Light" providing McLoughlin with and opportunity to Grandstand on behalf of the orders.
As several Sinn Fein members have been active in the campaign against the orders it had been previously assumed that we had Sinn Fein's support against the orders.
At their Ard Fheis, McLoughlin brought a motion of support for the orders on Sunday evening, at a time when most members are usually in the bar...
The motion passed. I doubt if the orders had to make any contribution to Sinn Fein at all.
read with interest Gaye. most if not all sex / company workers i have met whether male or female had a roman catholic upbringing! many had been in "care".
Certainly in my time there were far more sex workers who came into sex work after escaping the orders (one way or another, including private boarding school that may be another can of worms as yet unopened) than ever considered letting the orders "rescue" them from sex work!
The correlation between sex work and care is usually much simpler and more down to earth though, people who have been in care are far less likely to have family supports to turn to in a financial crisis.
Even so, the sex work consultation offers much more far reaching insight than just into sex work. It has consistently shown that, whenever they wish, the orders in combination with the radical feminist elements in the NGO sector can control politicians and the press and even re-write history in the face of challenge - AND GET AWAY WITH IT.
I know sex workers do not have a whole lot of public sympathy (and the orders know it too) but if they get their way with this it will be used as a precedent for other areas, and to affect other people.
For instance they are demanding legislation that will reduce the burden of proof to the level of denunciation. A landlord with be guilty of an imprison able offence if he rents premises to anyone he SUSPECTS of being a sex worker.
It will be, effectively, possible to make anyone homeless by denouncing them to their landlord as a sex worker, from which point it is very easy to channel children into residential care, and now (since recent changes to the constitution slipped it in with children's rights) to place them for adoption even without the consent of the natural parents.
The legislation they are demanding to "eradicate sex slavery" will, in fact open the door to moral totalitarianism, which, as I think we have all learned by now, has nothing to do with morality or ethics at all and everything to do with abuse and control.
yes many are in reality child abuse victims without family and support wherever based. yes agreed they will use any means to get their hands on children. including vaccine refusers. your post would be in place in a newspaper!
...and a lot of journalists have TRIED to get similar statements to the newspapers...only to have them spiked by editors...
I have had exactly the same experience trying to challenge other areas of the NGO sector including residential care.
It is not as simple as it all being about the religious. The religious were the foundation on which almost all our social services (as well as a surprisingly significant chunk of the UK's) were built. Even as they became secularised the ethos, and the influence of the orders remained...
It has NEVER been about caring...but always about exploiting social problems through containment, and the proceeds of that exploitation are twofold profit and power.
One of the reasons I chose to focus my activism on sex work is that it is the safest square on the whole rotten quilt to unpick. If you go after residential services to vulnerable adults or children they use the innocent as a human shield...as the Christian brothers did with the intellectually disabled in 2009...the message was simple, cut their funding and the vulnerable people get stuffed in dormitories with inappropriate companions until the funding is restored.
Sex workers, on the other hand, have already opted out of or been completely failed by all aspects of the voluntary and community sector. They are self reliant. Pull all funding allocated to sex work "services" tomorrow and very few sex workers will even notice, let alone suffer. They never asked for the so-called "help" that is being funded for them and want nothing to do with it. Most important of all they need the so-called help being funded for them as much as they need a hole in the head.
The orders and their secular allies and counterparts use the need for their services to hold us to ransom....
We HAVE nowhere else to put all those disabled people and unwanted children...
yes i am very sure that is true Gaye. but we have the people's media and press. the internet. i do understand. abducted and detained and tortured. 18 years of hell and then thrown out in bits. there would be alot of disabled people and unwanted children. net result. is there a book?
The scary part is that, in the event of an "intellectual disability" or even some form of Autism (like me) there is no guarantee you will be let out, leave alone thrown out.
The people actually caught up in it and their relatives, are terrified and subject to some kind of Stockholm Syndrome...you must remember, for most it is the ONLY place they can send people they love very much but feel they cannot handle, and they are BOMBARDED on all sides with messages telling them that they are doing the only right thing...
Disability and disadvantage are multibillion dollar industries these days, as ruthless, cutthroat and unscrupulous as any other multibillion dollar industries.
Another 20 or 30 years and there will be another scandal.
No book, I watched it all unfold with my own eyes...
i would say autism is autism. did not want to leave but by age 16 the gloves were off. yes stockholm syndrome indeed. all knew. now put out. they had done their worse over time and wanted disappeared. whether roman catholic or protestant it was the church taking advantage of a family in crisis. invisible disabilities are hell.
Jack you said a mouthful...and the BIG money is in making invisible disabilities as visible and disabling as possible THEN offering to contain them, for life if needs be...at a price...
It is a walk in the park to get €60k pa from the HSE for "containing" an autistic, intellectually disabled or "challenging" adult...and it is not impossible to get twice that...
You can't even get €20k pa to provide full time training services that might prepare the same people for independence.
There has to be a reason as to why with evidence everywhere there is still a chance that thay will continue to run the Irish schools. There is a lot more time spent in Ireland learning religion than any other country in the world. That alone says a lot.So punishing kids for being born will continuet too. No wonder Brady is still walking free. Look at what has been done to the Irish. The government gave away all the natural resources and the Church dident even try to stop all this.Because thay preach acceptation.