€500,000 put aside to fund memorial for abuse victims

Monday October 19 2009

THE Government last night announced the establishment of a “memorial committee” to oversee the creation of a memorial to victims of child abuse and consider arrangements for a national day of remembrance.

A budget of €500,000 is being set aside for the memorial, which will have the 1999 apology from former Taoiseach Bertie Ahern inscribed on it.

The new committee, which will meet with survivor groups in relation to the location and nature of the memorial, will be chaired by former chairman of the Office of Public Works (OPW) Sean Benton.

He will be assisted by Bernadette Fahy and Paddy Doyle, who are representing survivors of abuse.

The other members of the committee are: Sean O Laoire of the Royal Institute of the Architects of Ireland; Monica Corcoran of the Arts Council; and Billy Houlihan, formerly Cork county architect.

Last night, Education Minister Batt O’Keeffe said the committee will also consider arrangements for a national day of remembrance and solidarity.

“The memorial will be a permanent reminder of a dark period in Irish life when we collectively failed the most vulnerable members of society,” he said.

Previously, Transport Minister Noel Dempsey said the idea of a national day of atonement should be examined, with the possibility of holding it on June 21 — the longest day of the year.


Green Party deputy leader Mary White has been campaigning for a national day of remembrance since the publication of the Ryan report into child abuse in religious institutions, claiming it would provide people with an opportunity to reflect on what had happened.

“Finding a way to bring closure to this sorry episode in our history must be above politics,” she said.

One positive step the Government could take to help those who were so betrayed would be to declare a day of remembrance for all victims of abuse, Ms White added.

– ine Kerr Political Correspondent

Irish Independent

  1. management in large government areas in certain depts
    cannot be managed,as in any claim of abuse, a pla mas
    type of treatment would seem to be the norm,if govt cannot get it right,the mere mortal has not a hope,

    still looking for answers,there are none..tooooooooo
    many at the top table,take a look at yourselves

  2. honest hard working individuals have been abused
    in the workplace where senior management ruled the roost for their own gain, so what chance had a child

  3. 500,000 for a statue that is an insult to victims the thing will be worth more the redress payments abuse victims of the state got for be thrown in to the pool of sexual and physical Parana of this country. My opinion is anyone who helps to open this statue or what every you want to call it is helping to insult all victims it will just be a cold soulless thing the same as what abused us and the people who helped to hide it. And the continues abuse we faced at the hands of the redress board.A but what say would i have i am not on any board I am just a victim silly me.

  4. Charles O'Rourke

    Paddy, the mere fact that you are active in the formation of this monument is a guarentee that it will reflect the hopes and wishes whilst reflecting the integrity and dignity of many of us who have observed vigil these long years. Our silence is slowly lifting like the morning dew. For my part you have all the mandate I can give you and I hope you get all the mandate that you need.

  5. Paddy
    Apart from being pleased you are involved I trust, and indeed know that you will do your utmost to ensure this does not turn into a circus

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