FAMILY members of a resident in a care home at the centre of a Prime Time investigation have spoken out in defence of staff who have been suspended - and who have since received death threats.
The HSE-run Aras Attracta in Swinford, Co Mayo was the subject of an undercover investigation which made allegations of appalling treatment of residents.
Sheila Ryan, sister of 65-year-old Mary Garvan, who moved to the centre 20 years ago, released a statement today on behalf of her family.
"We heard that there were headlines in the papers that death threats had been made on those suspended from the Aras Attracta home in Co Mayo," read the statement.
"We want due process, we want the investigation including a garda investigation to proceed.
"We want those suspended allowed due process and the opportunity to tell their side of the story and explain their actions. We want them to be given the time and space to do that.
"We want to thank very sincerely the may carers and professionals who are today and have been in the past working quietly and professionally in Aras Attracta. They deserve our support our encouragement our appreciation and our thanks.
"We want them to know that they are doing a good job in a difficult profession.
"We believe that everyone is innocent until proven guilty and we believe that that those suspended should be afforded the time to tell their side of the story.
"Finally, and most importantly, our thoughts and prayers are with all of those on suspension. They have families and relatives too and we know they are all suffering.
"We want them treated fairly and with respect."
"The Garvan family believe that forgiveness is the way forward."