Mother and baby homes forum addresses 'pain'
Children's Minister Katherine Zappone said she is hoping to ease the long-standing "pain and suffering" endured by survivors of the notorious mother and baby homes through collaboration with the State.
She attended the inaugural meeting of the Collaborative Forum with former residents of the homes at Government Buildings yesterday. "This is a real opportunity for us to take one more step in putting our shameful past behind us - not forgetting it, or simply 'moving on', but acknowledging, knowing, recording, and building on it; using our past to help us to move forward," she said.
The forum was established to provide what she termed "open and consistent engagement between the State and former residents" of the Church and State-run homes between 1922 and 1998.
During that time, an estimated 6,000 children and babies died, including at least 796 children whose death certificates from the Tuam Mother and Baby Home, uncovered by Galway historian Catherine Corless, led to the establishment of a Commission of Investigation.