Saturday 29 April 2017

Cabinet to discuss reopening of State redress scheme for survivors of Mother and Baby homes

Minister Katherine Zappone. Photo: Tom Burke
Minister Katherine Zappone. Photo: Tom Burke
Niall O'Connor

Niall O'Connor

MINISTERS will next week discuss the prospect of reopening the State’s redress scheme for survivors of the Mother and Baby Homes.

Children’s Minister Katherine Zappone will bring an expert commission report to Cabinet which recommends the reopening of a 2002 scheme that previously paid out compensation for institutional abuse.

The scheme, which has to date cost almost €1.5bn, closed to new applicants in September 2011.

But there have been calls to reopen the scheme after the Commission for the Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes found that hundreds of remains of babies were discovered at a site in Tuam.

Any decision to reopen the redress scheme is likely to prove extremely costly.

Speaking to reporters in Dublin, Public Expenditure Minister Paschal Donohoe said a decision would be made by Cabinet.

“Myself and Minister Zappone at the moment are discussing and engaging with each other on issues that are there in relation to the second interim report in relation to the Mother and Baby Homes,” Mr Donohoe said.

“And this is a decision on an area in which all of Cabinet will have to engage with. On this stage it is far too early for me to comment on something Government may do given that the interim report has not been published.”

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