Advocacy and rights groups join in criticising government’s Magdalene Bill as unacceptable, unfair and full of broken promises to survivors
Justice for Magdalenes Research (JFMR), the National Women’s Council of Ireland, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties and Amnesty International (Ireland) today called on the government to honour the promise it made to Magdalene survivors in June 2013, to implement all of Mr Justice John Quirke’s recommendations for a Magdalene restorative justice scheme.
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For details of the numerous healthcare services omitted from the draft legislation, please see Briefing Note on Redress for Women Resident in Certain Institutions Bill 2014 >>
JFM Research deeply disappointed at exclusion of Magdalene Laundries from Inquiry
The Mother and Baby homes and Magdalene Laundries were both integral parts of Ireland’s architecture of containment of ‘problem’ women and girls. As JFMR has previously pointed out to Minister Reilly, the McAleese inquiry did not investigate or make findings about abuse or lines of responsibility for abuse in the Magdalene Laundries. Furthermore, the McAleese Report does not contain a single word from the 796 pages of testimony submitted by JFM and it failed to adequately examine issues relating to deaths and burials. Serious doubt has been cast on the accuracy of the McAleese Report’s assertions regarding duration of stay.
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Adoption Rights Alliance (ARA) and Justice for Magdalenes Research (JFMR) Make Joint Submission to Terms of Reference for Commission of Inquiry into Mother and Baby Homes
Adoption Rights Alliance (ARA) and Justice for Magdalenes Research (JFMR) today submitted a comprehensive briefing to inform the terms of reference for the Commission of Inquiry into Mother and Baby Homes. ARA and JFMR, who, along with representatives of Irish First Mothers and historian Sean Lucey, met with Minister Flanagan on Wednesday, 25 June 2014, and suggested that the Commission of Investigation should focus on the issue of children born out of wedlock in Ireland since 1922 rather than institutions per se. Communicated in that meeting and in the joint submission is the understanding that this issue gives rise to six distinct fields of inquiry:
- Infant mortality rates;
- Adoption practices;
- Vaccine trials and medical experimentation;
- Forced labour and incarceration of unmarried girls and women who gave birth to babies or were seen to be ‘at risk’ of becoming mothers;
- Conditions in the institutions, including neglect, denial of adequate medical care and cruel punishment of unmarried mothers and their infants and children; and
- Burials of unmarried mothers and their children who remained in recarceral institutions.
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Read the submission >>
Justice for Magdalenes (JFM), the survivor advocacy group, is announcing the end of its political campaign, begun in June 2009.
Read the entire exit statement >>
Justice for Magdalenes gratefully ackowledges The Ireland Fund of Great Britain for its recent grant. This funding will enable JFM to cover expenses associated with our final push in the UN Committee Against Torture process, to gather and print testimonies, and to perform further research in order to assist the Inter-Departmental Committee's inquiries into state interaction with the Laundries.
We also gratefully acknowledge the support of the Feminist Review Trust, under which JFM has been gathering testimonies in conjunction with and as a pilot phase of the UCD Magdalene Oral History Project (which is also funded by the Irish Research Council for Humanities and Social Science), directed by Dr. Katherine O'Donnell, Director of Women's Studies at UCD's School of Social Justice and JFM Advisory Committee member.