Mother and Baby Homes: The numbers which underscore society's failure

Mother and Baby Homes: The numbers which underscore society's failure

The infants graveyard at Sean Ross Abbey in Roscrea, Tipperary, which was mother and baby home operated by the Sisters of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary from 1930 to 1970.

Much has already been said and written following today's publication of the final report by the Commission of Investigation into Mother and baby homes.

Underpinning all those words, however, are a set of numbers which we as a society have a duty to learn from and never lose sight of.

The first set of figures is the total number of perinatal (the period immediately before and after birth) deaths that occurred in these homes from the 1920s to the 1980's.

The second table shows the total number of neonatal (the first month after birth) deaths which occurred in the same period.

The third table shows the number of deaths in infancy (the period after the first month and up to two years) which occurred in these homes in the first 80 years of this century.

The fourth table shows the number of childhood deaths (the period after two years) which occurred in our Mother and baby homes.

The final and perhaps most stark set of figures is a breakdown of the major causes of death that were recorded among infants and children alike during that dark period of Irish history.

These are the numbers which underpin our comprehensive coverage and analysis of the Commission's report. For more see our dedicated 'Mother and baby homes' section here

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