By Jennifer Hough

CONCERNS have been raised over how a High Court action – brought against his own members by the head of a group for survivors of institutional abuse – is being funded.

Last November, Noel Barry of Cork-based charity, Right of Place, took out an injunction against a new committee seeking to take over the running of the organisation. The case has been adjourned three times since.

Patrick Walsh, British spokesman for the Irish Survivors of Child Abuse (SOCA), said any money given to Right of Place to help victims of abuse should not be used to fund an action over an internal dispute.

Mr Walsh said he was very interested to know how the legal action was being paid for.

“Any money that this organisation has received for charitable endeavour should not be used in the High Court,” he said. “That money which is supposed to help members of the group could be used against them is an obscenity.”

It is understood the HSE has instructed Right of Place management that funding provided by it is not to be used to support the legal action, and that it will be monitoring the situation.

Right of Place is being asked to urgently furnish the HSE with details of the group’s structure and finance, including the number of bank accounts within the organisation, how petty cash is managed and details of the number of clients who attended meetings or were referred for counselling.

Mr Walsh said the HSE should have had proper management controls in place at Right of Place since the beginning, and said he believed it was only because of public exposure by the Irish Examiner that it was showing an active interest in the matter.

Right of Place is run by Mr Barry, a victim of abuse at the Rosminian school at Upton, Co Cork. In 2009, the HSE allocated the group €337,500 and the Department of Education gave it €75,331. Since 2002 it has collected more than €2.2m from the HSE, and the health board previously, and more than €1m from the Department of Education. A further €88,000 was secured in National Lottery funding.

Right of Place has also received unknown amounts from Catholic bishops and religious orders.

The HSE has told the group no further funding will be given until the internal dispute is settled and members prove they can manage public money appropriately.

Mr Barry has refused to comment or answer any questions relating to the running of Right of Place.

Irish Examiner. 21 January 2009


16 Responses to “Questions over funding of legal action against abuse survivors”

  1. Paddy says:

    I’m watching MM. Is there a law that says I can’t take on the Vatican? Maybe they’ll make me an offer I can’t refuse!

  2. mmaguire says:


    Watch yourself Paddy!

    You cant take on the Vatican

    Or they’ll make you an offer through the REDRESS Board.



  3. Hi Paddy,
    If we can get the apology first then lock him up afterwards then throw away the key.

  4. Paddy says:

    In my view the Pope is an accessory to serious crimes and should not be allowed inside the ‘doors’ of England or Ireland. I’m all in favour of him coming here provided we can arrest him. Perhaps a citizens arrest is in order! Paddy.

  5. Hi Paddy. What do you think about the pope going to the UK. Wasn’t it those in the UK as much to blame in setting up these institution in the 1800 to stop the Roman catholic church getting funny ideas from the priest going over to France to be trained and bringing the revolutionary ideas back home to Ireland around 1878 the British at that time needed fodder for their war machine for their empire then what better way to get this regimental fodder, the catholic church by financing and controlling their ideas they are then in full control of the Catholic or Protestant institution we should be also getting a sincere apology and compensation from the British government after all at that time Ireland was under British rule, Like the british are always saying Ireland is A GREAT COUNTRY IF THERE WAS NO IRISH IN IRELAND. I SAY ENGLAND WOULD BE A BETTER COUNTRY IF THERE WAS NO BRITISH IN ENGLAND. While the Pope is visiting England why don’t a lot of us look for the Pope to visit us here in Ireland around the same time and personally apologised to all of us who were in institutions as mentioned in the Ryan report.

  6. Paddy says:

    MM. Survivors groups were set up “all over the place”. None that I know of have a mandate to speak for people who were abused while in institutional care. That’s how it is. If anyone knows different, perhaps they will make us all aware of it.

  7. Hanora Brennan says:

    Hear! Hear! Paddy!

  8. Hi Paddy I feel your anger and you have a right to be angry I am very angry with the going on at Right of Place at the moment that Noel Barry was in Upton during my time how dare he exploit me I did not give him permission to get 4 or 5 million Euro on the back of the survivors of the institutionally abused. Future support is going to be at risk because of his going on in the cork area the health board have got to be brought to boot for allowing this to happen the health board is up to something that doesn’t mean Nole Barry is off the hook all support groups will have to answer to any wrong dooing and when that happens i hope they are brought justice named and shamed.

  9. mmaguire says:


    Am I right in thinking that all of the survivor groups are run by “survivors”?


  10. Paddy says:

    There are man questions to be answered relating to these people who’ve set themselves up as “spokespersons” for ‘survivors of abuse’. As a person who was abused while in an industrial school I want the message to go out loud and clear that NOT ONE OF THESE GROUPS FROM NORTH TO SOUTH, FROM EAST TO WEST AND ALL AREAS IN BETWEEN, represent me nor HAVE THEY EVER SOUGHT A MANDATE TO DO SO. I’m well able to speak for myself and I resent being made to look like an idiot due to the activities of some of these groups. If they did have a conscience they would hang their heads in shame. Paddy.

  11. Hi Paddy I have been reading most of the blogs on your site recently and I have been shocked by the comments that have been made about some of the victims of institutionally abused support groups.
    These people that run support groups on behalf of survivors, have they not got any sense of justice after all if we were not there where would they be it appears these people are trying to or have exploited us long enough i for one would like them to account for their actions in squandering any funding that they received on the back of us survivors they can start by showing us their books for the last 10 years if they don’t all the relevant funding organisation should be contacted and look for the information from them anybody can find out about this funding because money always leaves a paper trail the secret is to know where the money came from under the freedom of information act i am very interested to meet up with any liked minded survivors in connection with the above im a survivor myself. Happy hunting.

  12. Paul says:

    All those in religion got off bloody lightly. In my opinion they all should be hunted down and burned.

  13. Charles O'Rourke says:

    Find it strange that Ratzinger has called the Bishops to discuss the Ryan and Murphy Reports but not the heads of those orders who carried out these crimes as reported in the Ryan findings. After all the Christian Brothers in Letterfrack and Salthill and Artane were denying all of the raping and torturing of thousands of Irish children in their Gulags up to five days before the release of the Ryan Report. So in effect they are saying that Ratzinger is lying given that even he has accepted the findings by Justice Ryan.Perhaps that explains why the Irish Christian Brothers are not being called, they are to be left out in the cold until Ratzinger decides if it is expedient to abolish them by Papal decree. Now that would be a Christian thing to do but then again it was never about Christianity.

  14. Charles O'Rourke says:

    Yes, the revolt has begun, and yes we could have been there today with Brendan Butler,s group at the gates of Maynooth and yes we need help if we are to move forward. Broadening our base and creating dialoge, no change is possible in Ireland unless we have a movement that can not be ignored. It is to big an issiue not to unite and seek consensus.I suggest we activily seek dialoge with Brendan Butler,s group to begin with. What can we loose, we know what we can win.

  15. Charles O'Rourke says:

    Dear people and all of good will,It is now time to reach out to those groups in Ireland such as Brendan Butler’s “Voice of The Faithful” and with whom we have so much in common. The gates of Maynooth are calling as the bishops gather to brace themselves for their meeting with Ratzinger. Among them is Drennan a man who refuses to leave the meat pot and in whose area some of the worst abuse took place, Imagine the names of such Gulags been mentioned in the state rooms of the Vatican State. How does Letterfrack sound in German, or Salthill? and Drennan will say ” never heard of them” “I was in Dublin at that time where I never heard any thing either.

  16. mmaguire says:


    “The HSE has told the group no further funding will be given until the internal dispute is settled and members prove they can manage public money appropriately.”

    Does their past record not already show that they may not be able to meet this requirement?

    Mind you, research shows that voluntary groups tend to reflect the structures and behaviours of their main sponsors.

    So should I take this to be a reflection of what the incumberent RoP management think of the HSE ?

    With an income in the last year approaching 500,000 + (Unknown), maybe they should change their name too, to “Right Place”.


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