Catherine Corless says Government comments on redress are 'almost a threat'

Catherine Corless says Government comments on redress are 'almost a threat'

Catherine Corless: 'From the start we said this was a terrible report.' Picture: Laura Hutton/

Veteran campaigner Catherine Corless has called on the Government to talk to the survivors of the mother and baby homes to see what they want rather than “dish out a lump of money” in a bid to “put away” the issue and forget about it.

Survivors were tired of being put in the background, she told Newstalk Breakfast.

Ms Corless said that comments by Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman expressing concern that the Government’s redress scheme could be halted if the Mother and Baby Homes Commission’s report was rejected were “almost a threat”.

It had been shocking to realise that the commission had “never intended” to use the testimonies of survivors in the report, she said.

Taking those testimonies had been “a useless exercise” and she queried why it had been done.

Survivors had “opened their hearts and souls” in their testimonies. 

“What was that for?” Ms Corless said, adding that there had also been efforts to “lock away” the testimonies for 30 years.

From the start, we said this was a terrible report.

The survivors wanted justice, but to date, nothing had happened other than apologies, she said. 

Something good could come from the revelations of Prof Daly in Oxford earlier this week, Ms Corless said — the commission could come before the Oireachtas committee.

In the meantime, she wanted the public and the media to “keep it going, keep talking, keep up the pressure, keep them on their toes".

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