Appeal made by PSNI as 52 reports of abuse in mother and baby insitutions are made

To date, three reports are from mothers who were brought to institutions in Northern Ireland from the Republic of Ireland.
Appeal made by PSNI as 52 reports of abuse in mother and baby insitutions are made

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) have confirmed that 52 allegations of abuse in mother and baby institutions have been received.

It comes after an investigation into allegations of physical and sexual abuse involving mother and baby institutions, work houses and magdalene laundries was launched in October last year.

To date, three reports have been from mothers who were brought to institutions in Northern Ireland from the Republic of Ireland.

Meanwhile, seven reports have been received from babies who were born in Northern Ireland, then moved across the Border, or further afield, to be adopted.

Detectives working on the investigation are appealing for to anyone currently residing in the Republic of Ireland, who may have suffered in institutions in Northern Ireland, or witnessed anything they thought was suspicious at the time, to come forward and report.

Detective Superintendent Gary Reid, who is the operational lead for the investigation, said that the force will continue to do all they can to reach as many people as possible.

"We know there are people currently residing in the Republic of Ireland that haven’t yet come forward to us," Det Supt Reid said.

"We want to reassure them that this investigation is still very much live and ongoing and that we want to hear from them too.

"If you were the victim of abuse in any of these Northern Irish institutions, or know somebody who was, or if you witnessed potential criminal activity take place, please contact us.

"We care about what you have to say, will listen and support you, and will act to keep you and others safe."

An adoptee from Marian Vale mother and baby institution shared their experience being adopted in the 1960s.

"My birth mother was a resident at Marian Vale in Newry, Northern Ireland in 1968, while she was pregnant with me," they said.

"My adoption by an American couple was arranged there, they had family in the Republic of Ireland.

"In the weeks following my birth, three contradictory birth certificates were issued for me presumably to facilitate my transport from Northern Ireland to the Republic of Ireland and ultimately to the America.

I feel that I was transported like a commodity - a practice I find reprehensible.

"I urge anyone else with such evidence to come forward and report to the Police Service of Northern Ireland."

The PSNI is working with An Garda Síochána on the investigation.

All those who come forward will be spoken to by a specialist detective from the Historic Child Abuse Unit within the PSNI’s Public Protection Branch.

They will also be offered the opportunity to have their account recorded so that a criminal investigation can take place.

Anyone with information can contact: MotherBabyHomes.Magdalenelaundries@psni.police.uk

More in this section

Sponsored Content

Add Echolive.ie to your home screen - easy access to Cork news, views, sport and more