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KCC Issues Formal Apology To Mother & Baby Home Survivors.

: 22/02/2021 - 15:48

Kildare County Council has issued formal apologies to survivors of the mother and baby homes at its monthly meeting this afternoon.

The county home here was in Athy, and based in what is now St. Vincent's Hospital.

It operated from 1898 and 1969.

KCC was asked to issue the apology in a joint motion by Social Democrat Cllr., Nuala Kileen and Labour Cllr., Aoife Breslin.

Furthermore, they have asked KCC to acknowledge the final report of the Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes.

This found that 9,000 babies and children died at 18 homes examined, between 1922 and 1998.

The councillors say the council should, proactively, reach out "to survivors and survivor groups to offer practical assistance to survivors and victims, listens to the survivors and asks how we can assist them."

Furthermore, they say that " That at an appropriate time, an appropriate memorial should be decided in consultation with the survivors and their families."

This afternoon, Kildare County CEO, Peter Carey, and Mayor., Cllr. Mark Stafford, make formal statements of apology.

The motion itself has yet to be heard, and the statements were made at the beginning of today's meeting

Article up-dated following release of the text of the Mayor's apology, by KCC:

"The Chief Executive joined the Cathaoirleach in expressing a wholehearted apology on behalf of Kildare County Council.

Statement by Cathaoirleach, Cllr Mark Stafford:

In relation to the Publication of the Final Report of the Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes on behalf of the members, the Chief Executive and staff of the County Council of the County of Kildare I wish to apologise wholeheartedly and without equivocation to the women and children who suffered as a result of this councils failure to look after some of the most vulnerable and terrified people entrusted in our care. Forgotten and abandoned, many had to endure the most unbearable cruelties. We remember the many young women and babies that died in tragic circumstances in these Homes.

During the period from 1926 to 1998 the period of the terms of reference of the Report of the Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes, the County Home in Athy had a maternity unit attached.

Overall responsibility for the homes owned by a local authority rested with the local authority. They were responsible for the upkeep, improvements and oversight. I welcome the Government Action Plan and hope that the Government proceeds with implementation with all due haste.

I wish to acknowledge in addition to those women and children who were resident in the County Home, those from Kildare that may have been sent to similar institutions and in other parts of the country and those survivors who have now made their homes in County Kildare and your families we acknowledge our failings to support you, protect you and keep you safe and for that we are sorry."


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