Friday, 25 May 2018

Candlelight Vigil Belfast City Hall



                               
Beautiful bog cotton













Many thanks to the employees at Boston Scientific Galway who kindly donated and therefore paid for all of the candles. 



Sunday, 20 May 2018

The lost children of Marian Vale - Radio 4 documentary

The Lost Children of Marianvale

During much of the 20th century unmarried women who became pregnant faced being condemned, stigmatised and shunned by their communities.
Across the Republic and Northern Ireland thousands of women and girlswere sent to mother and baby homes to give birth in secret and then gave their babies over for adoption.
For some women, the homes which were mostly run by the Catholic Church, provided sanctuary and a chance for them to rebuild their lives.
But others have claimed they were subjected to human rights abuses which culminated in seeing their babies taken from them and adopted out without their consent.
File on 4 investigates one such former institution in Northern Ireland - Marianvale in Newry - and hears concerns over the conditions and practices at the home which closed in 1984.
Now some of the children adopted from the home are in a race against time to find their birth mothers before they pass away. Some claim they face a trail of secrecy and obfuscation and there are growing calls for a public inquiry to provide answers about the extent of alleged forced adoption practices within Northern Ireland.
File on 4 asks whether enough is being done to provide answers for some women who went into Northern Ireland's mother and baby homes and for the babies they never saw again.
Reporter: Michael Buchanan
Producer: Ben Robinson
Editor: Gail Champion.ring much of the 20th century unmarried women who became pregnant faced being condemned, stigmatised and shunned by their communities. 
Across the Republic and Northern Ireland thousands of women and girlswere sent to mother and baby homes to give birth in secret and then gave their babies over for adoption. 
For some women, the homes which were mostly run by the Catholic Church, provided sanctuary and a chance for them to rebuild their lives. 
But others have claimed they were subjected to human rights abuses which culminated in seeing their babies taken from them and adopted out without their consent. 
File on 4 investigates one such former institution in Northern Ireland - Marianvale in Newry - and hears concerns over the conditions and practices at the home which closed in 1984. 
Now some of the children adopted from the home are in a race against time to find their birth mothers before they pass away. Some claim they face a trail of secrecy and obfuscation and there are growing calls for a public inquiry to provide answers about the extent of alleged forced adoption practices within Northern Ireland.
File on 4 asks whether enough is being done to provide answers for some women who went into Northern Ireland's mother and baby homes and for the babies they never saw again. 
Reporter: Michael Buchanan
Producer: Ben Robinson
Editor: Gail Champion.

Friday, 18 May 2018

Candlelight Vigil Belfast City Hall

A candlelight vigil will take place at Belfast City Hall on Tuesday May 29th to remember and recognize those who spent time in the Mother and Baby Institutions and Magdalene laundries throughout Ireland. The evening will culminate with music and contributions by guest speakers.

Not only is the vigil a memorial for the deceased but it is a manifestation of support for ‘Survivors’ in their quest for justice and recognition be it for their incarceration, forced adoption, abuses suffered during childbirth or ill treatment when eventually fostered out. This collaborative event organised by artist Sadie Cramer with Birth Mothers and their Children for Justice Northern Ireland, recognizes the difficulties encountered in accessing birth and medical records and the broader questions surrounding illegal adoptions and vaccination trials. 




All welcome to this free event. 
Please join us from 7.30pm for refreshments.

For further information contact:
Sadie Cramer  00 353 87 2940458                 sadieandmark@eircom.net
Eunan Duffy   077 18645924            
Birth Mothers and their children for Justice Northern Ireland

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Minister Zappone Statement May 1st

Government confirms invitation to UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence to visit Ireland in relation to Mother and Baby Home issues


Tuesday 1st May, 2018

The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Dr. Katherine Zappone T.D. and the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Mr. Simon Coveney T.D., today confirmed that the Irish Government has issued an invitation to Mr. Fabian Salvioli, the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence, to visit Ireland. Mr. Salvioli has recently been appointed as a successor to Mr. Pablo de Greiff in this role.


Notwithstanding Ireland’s standing invitation to all thematic special procedures holders, the Government decided to extend an invitation to the UN Special Rapporteur on the promotion of truth, justice, reparation and guarantees of non-recurrence to visit Ireland to consider the State’s response to the legacy of former Mother and Baby homes and to examine the progress being made on these matters. 

Confirming the invitation the Tánaiste stated: ‘Ireland recognises that the system of Special Procedures is a central element of the UN Human Rights machinery and we value the contribution of the independent human rights experts who hold mandates from the Human Rights Council to report and advice on human rights from a thematic or country specific perspective.’ 

The Government believes that Mr. Fabian Salvioli could provide valuable assistance in responding to the issues relating to mother and baby homes. A visit from the UN Special Rapporteur could also provide vital insight into the relationship between international human rights standards and the everyday lives of Ireland’s citizens.

Minister Zappone added: ‘I am very conscious that experiences relating to Mother and Baby Homes have resulted in pain and distress for many people in Ireland and abroad, most especially among former residents of these Homes and their relatives. The Irish Government is determined to reveal the history of these Homes, to establish the facts of what happened to vulnerable women and children in them and to provide support to former residents of the Homes. Ireland is proud of its record in the promotion of human rights globally. We believe that we, like all States, should be accountable for compliance with our obligations under international human rights instruments".

Ireland’s recognition of the importance of the UN Special Procedures is being given practical expression by the upcoming visit by Ms Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Sale and Sexual Exploitation of Children, between 14 and 21 May 2018. The Department of Children and Youth Affairs will be an important partner in the visit given that the focus of her work relates to children. Minister Zappone will meet the UN Special Rapporteur in the course of her visit. The Independent Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes has also agreed to meet the Special Rapporteur during her visit. 

Ends//