Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Ireland: Magdalene Investigation

The Government should set up a statutory investigation into allegations of torture and degrading treatment against women committed to Magdalene Laundries.
It should also punish the perpetrators and provide redress to the women who suffered, the United Nations Committee Against Torture has recommended.
In a report detailing its "concluding observations" on Ireland's record of protecting the rights of those in detention, the committee has also strongly criticised the State's "inadequate" response to alleged reports that it cooperated with rendition flights.
The report, which was published this morning following two days of hearings before the committee in Geneva last month, also criticises the conditions in Irish prisons, the treatment of asylum seekers and the State's failure to prosecute anyone from evidence gathered in the Ryan report into abuse of children in residential institutions.
In a series of recommendations regarding the alleged committal of women to Magdalene Laundries, the committee says it is "gravely concerned" at the failure by the State party to protect the girls and women. It criticises the State for failing to regulate or inspect the laundries, where it is alleged physical, emotional abuses and other ill-treatment were committed. These may have amounted to violations of the UN convention against torture, according the report.

More on the Magdalene Laundries:

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