Bethany survivors want a record of their births

Listening to the Joe Duffy show last week I was reminded of the contempt the state and Catholic Church has for dumped children, and the very sad history of the victims.

This is the same issue that I raised with the Government 10 years ago, regarding the Bethany Home records. In our case it is a privately run organisation, covered by the umbrella of being religious, and excluded from the Freedom of Information Acts. These Protestant-run children’s homes could only be considered to be a modern day trafficking-of-children organisation, with the blessing of the State.

The people that have been in touch with me have been desperate to know who they are, and are frustrated with the officials from government departments. When you raise the issue with Government officials at best they just inform you they have received your letter. If you were an animal, there is traceability for many years. Why treat humans differently? We urge Alan Shatter and Kathleen Lynch to implement laws to treat humans no differently than animals, and for all records to be registered in the department of births and deaths where all Irish citizens can have their information as a right, irrespective of what religion they may be. This facility does not exist for Protestants and for some Catholics in Ireland today.

Derek Leinster


Bethany Survivors Group



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