The Shame of Ireland

The Shame of Ireland

Here’s how to make a submission to the mother and baby homes inquiry

Children’s Minister Charlie Flanagan has encouraged those who wish to make a submission to “act without delay”.

A headstone for a baby who died at the Bessborough mother and baby home in Blackrock Cork in the mid-1990's.

A NEW EMAIL address for submissions on the terms of reference for the Commission of Investigation into mother and baby homes has been launched.

Children’s Minister Charlie Flanagan announced this morning that anyone who wishes to make a submission should contact

Flanagan said that submissions could relate to the institutions or locations that should be considered for inclusion or the general matters that the commission should examine.

The Government is anxious to have the Commission of Investigation established before the Dáil recess and has set a tight deadline. I am urging those who wish to make submissions to act without delay in availing of this opportunity to inform the considerations now underway.

The Minister will meet with a number of advocacy groups and members of other political parties in the coming weeks to discuss the terms of reference.

Flanagan said that the cross-departmental review committee tasked with examining the issue will report to the government before the end of this month.

He had previously confirmed that the scope of the investigation will go beyond the home operated by the Sisters of Bon Secours in Tuam, Co Galway – the site of a mass grave where almost 800 babies are thought to be buried.

The inquiry will deal with other mother and baby homes, including Bethany Home. Flanagan has stated that county homes will not be included however, to avoid “a bottomless quagmire of investigation”.

A number of services have been made available to people affected by the issues raised. Those seeking information on the support services can contact the HSE National Information Line on 1850 24 1850 from 9 am to 5 pm, Monday to Friday.

People can also talk to trained counsellors through Connect, a free out-of-hours support line from 6 pm to 10 pm. The service is normally only available from Wednesday to Sunday, but will expand to a seven-day service until the end of July.

The number is 1800 477 477 in Republic of Ireland and 00800 477 477 77 in Northern Ireland and the UK.

Connect Manager Theresa Merrigan said: “As a service that supports people who were affected by traumatic experiences in Industrial Schools, the Laundries and Mother and Baby Homes we anticipate extra need at this time.”

The National Counselling Service is also available to assist those affected.

People seeing adoption and tracing information have been advised to contact Tusla (the Child and Family Agency) or the Adoption Authority of Ireland.

Views: 1141

Comment by Doctor Rosaleen Rogers on September 17, 2014 at 19:10

Psychiatric Hospitals like St Luke`s in Clonmel ought to be on the list of places to investigate.  Locked away for years,starved brutalized , laughed at and treated like dirt...Victims like myself have waited a life time for an apology and redress.

Another time - another day is not good enough.  If redress is not delivered  now it will be too late for myself and hundreds of others and Judge Murphy`s legacy will match that of Judge Ryan...Doctor Rosaleen Rogers Chairman of Templemore`s Forgotten Victims.       

Comment by Rob Northall on October 5, 2014 at 18:13

Draft mother and baby homes inquiry terms circulated

James Reilly says memo on topic to be brought to Cabinet ‘as soon as possible’

The draft terms of reference for the commission of inquiry into the mother and baby homes have now been circulated among all the relevant departments, Minister for Children James Reilly has said. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times.

Alison Healy


First published: Sat, Oct 4, 2014, 15:27

The draft terms of reference for the commission of inquiry into mother and baby homes have now been circulated among all the relevant departments, Minister for Children James Reilly has said.

The Government announced the establishment of a commission of inquiry in May, following revelations about the deaths of almost 800 children at Tuam mother and baby home. The commission of inquiry will be chaired by Ms Justice Yvonne Murphy.

Dr Reilly said he was now waiting for the input of officials from the departments which include the departments of Health, Justice, Foreign Affairs, Education, Social Protection, Environment and Taoiseach.

 “They’ll come back to us and then we’ll go to the Attorney General with the final draft because this has to be done with particular care because of its impact on so many different people,” Dr Reilly said.

He said he wanted to ensure that the terms of reference were wide enough and addressed all the questions that needed to be answered. He said it was important that the inquiry was “efficient and timely so that it doesn’t take forever to come to a conclusion to the dismay of those who want answers”.

Dr Reilly said he also wanted to consult with the Opposition parties and other interested parties before the terms of reference were signed off. Asked if this consultation process would take weeks or months, he said: “no, not months. It will be in the next number of weeks and I will be bringing a memo to Cabinet as soon as possible”.

He has already said the scope of the investigation will go beyond Tuam and will include the Bethany Home. Several groups have been lobbying for wider terms of reference for the inquiry. A delegation of 35 travelled to Brussels last month to seek support from MEPs for a broader remit in the terms of reference.

Dr Reilly was speaking after he addressed a conference on childhood bereavement at Dublin Castle.

When he was minister for health earlier this year, Dr Reilly announced a plan to extend eligibility for medical cards to people with specified illnesses and appointed a expert panel to look at how to do this.

Asked about the view of expert panel that it was “neither feasible nor desirable” to prioritise medical conditions for medical card eligibility, Dr Reilly said: “We’ll be awaiting Minister Varadkar’s report on that when it comes to Cabinet.”


Comment by Rob Northall on October 5, 2014 at 18:28

Please Consider writing a Letter or Email in Support of having Industrial Schools Included in the Mother & Baby Homes Inquiry

Jan O'Sullivan can be contacted @

James Reilly can be contacted @

PS Don't Forget to mention The Submission at the Beginning of this Blog or you Will be to that New Submissions are not being Considered

Comment by Gaye Dalton on October 5, 2014 at 18:40


Run that by me again?

Did somebody seriously say they were planning to have an inquiry into unlawful child death and burials that EXEMPTED the industrial schools?

Sorry, I can't keep up with every issue I empathise with, there are just too many gone to rotten, but if I stand back and squint my eyes and try to see through eyes that belong in a normal world, knowing what we know, it is INSANE that anyone should even have to ask.

Those places took innocent kids and killed them from the inside out...most of them got to keep a pulse at least, but too many did not.

I swear to God a child in Ireland is worth less than a old collie cross in the dog pound, and until it is all ACKNOWLEDGED and every possible reparation made that is *NOT* in the past at all.

...because heaven help any child today at the mercy of a state that still thinks brushing that kind of cr*p under the carpet is acceptable.

Comment by Kathleen O'Malley. on October 5, 2014 at 18:59

No inquirie carried out in Ireland had been fair and correct.  The Commission into Child  Abuse  was chaired by Judge Ryan now deceased an ex Pupil  of the Christain Brothers. 

I talked about the Mother and Baby homes in my Book "Childhood Interrupted"

 also the illegal adoptions why has it taken so long for any action to take place, which concerns me greatly why now will the Irish Government do so.  They brush every thing under the carpet and carry on as usual  The Rose coloured glasses must now need replacing. 

It has taken Martin Sixsmiths film "Philomena" and his documentary recently to expose Ireland and its hidden dirty shameful past.Thank you Martin.

Now we have the Irish Government squandering the Survivors moneythe Statutory Fund.  We sighned a petition against its decision alas it fell on stoney ears.  How can one have confidence  in it doing the right thing. 



Where ever there was a Mother and Baby Home an Industrial school was waiting in the side lines to fill up the beds and there lies the situation of "Child Labour Camps.  Any opportunity for the Religious to make money they were there. 

Kathleen O'Malley. "Childhood Interrupted" 

Comment by Kathleen O'Malley. on October 5, 2014 at 19:02

Rob. an you post my comments on please.


Comment by Andrew Brennan on October 5, 2014 at 19:10

Over a 20 year period (1949 to 1969) a total of 238 children apparently absconded from the Industrial Schools and were never heard from again, either by family or friends [Kennedy Report 1970] - and there were no news reports or attempts to locate these children! 

It's likely some were quite illegally consigned to the Magdalene Asylums but how many?  And what happened to the rest of the children.  Also it is suspected that many children - who were unable to be sold onto rich Catholics in North America (and elsewhere) were also consigned, again illegally, to the Industrial Schools system where many appear to have vanished! 

The Irish State had a great way to disappear children!!

Comment by Rob Northall on October 5, 2014 at 19:29


The site is Unmoderated and your Comments are posted immediately ;-)

See above Andrews Post above this one??

Never Deleted or Censored a Post, Not going to start Now!

Comment by frank mullen on October 6, 2014 at 13:30

After reading this about the treatment (torture) of small babies  as i am now living  in USA am a survivor of Sligo   i have never read of any other Nation doing this to children i no longer have any pride or respect to say i am a 3month old baby in a orphan was told (one of the nuns)." i will be gone by morning"  only for Margret (she was a survivor)  she keep me alive.that is another i cant sleep lately now 3.30am i notice this since having  to deal with CARANUA giving me a hard time just to get refunds for my own money spent on treatment why is that country so cruel. 

Comment by Kathleen O'Malley. on October 6, 2014 at 14:22

Ireland knows no other way to behave other than learned behaviour.  i.e. Humilating, Torturing, Starving and Slavery of Chldren and young People.  Now we hear of the Cess Pit where 800 Babies and Young Children  have been discovered


This is Ireland.  Try not o get to worked up about it but don't give up  if you feel it is worth it.  One point the religious paid out this money in March 2013,  but the Government are only now deaing with the caims.  Perhaps you have a case  if your bills started  after that date as they had a duty of care to notify Survivors of their plans.  Just a thought.

Good luck.

Kathleen O'Malley.  "Childhood Interrupted"



Thats Holy Catholic Ireland.

Kathleen O'Malley. "Childhood Interrupted"

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