A mother in distress - A baby rescued

IT would be presumptious and probably unwise to try to imagine what is going on in the mind of the mother of the baby abandoned in a shopping bag outside of Dublin, but it is reasonable to assume that she is distressed, unhappy, and frightened for herself and her baby.

After that, everything is conjecture. It is chastening, though, that a mother, for whatever reason, abandons a baby rather than turn to our health or social services. Even though those services are criticised daily, it is still hard to imagine that in a situation like this that they would not provide a far better option than the one taken. The system may be tottering but most of those working in it would go the extra mile to help a person in a crisis like this and maybe its time to make sure everyone knows that emergency care is available if needed.

To counter that disappointment, it is cheering, though, to contrast the garda response, one that is patently caring and sincere, non-judgemental and concerned, with the mindset that informed the garda investigation of the Kerry Babies scandal all of those years ago. Where there was moralising and hubris, there now seems a genuine empathy.

Though it cannot be said with certainty, it is unlikely that someone does not know who the mother is and where she is. Any such person should come forward because it is unimaginable that the woman does not need some help, be it emotional or physical.

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