Complaint to gardaí over Bessborough file alterations

Irish Examiner

By Conall Ó Fátharta
Irish Examiner Reporter

A participant in the Bessborough Mother and Baby Home vaccine trial has made a formal Garda complaint after it emerged files relating to the trial were altered in 2002.

In November, the Irish Examiner revealed the files of mothers and children used in the 1960/61 4-in-1 vaccine trial were altered in 2002 — just weeks after the Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse sought discovery of records from the religious order running the home.

Mari Steed was born in Bessborough in 1960 and subsequently adopted in the US.

Her natural mother’s file is one of those listed as having been changed.

Earlier this month, Ms Steed made a formal complaint to the gardaí and Data Protection Commissioner concerning the matter.

In the Garda complaint, which has been seen by the Irish Examiner, she states she has also informed the Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes of the complaint as it has requested her to provide documentation to it relating to her participation in the vaccine trial.

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