Quinn Wants Orders to Pay More

By Joanne Hunt
Irish Times
February 4, 2012

THE MINISTER for Education is to write to the 18 religious congregations, which ran residential institutions where children were abused, asking them to contribute more towards the €1.2 billion bill for compensating victims.

The letter from Ruairí Quinn follows questions put to Taoiseach Enda Kenny in the Dáil yesterday about the status of the payment of compensation by the congregations.

In 2009, the Ryan commission published its finding that children put into State care in religious-run residential institutions had suffered systemic abuse. Under the 2002 indemnity agreement, the congregations agreed to provide a contribution of €128 million to those abused, comprising cash, property and counselling services.

The final cost of the response to residential institutional child abuse, however, has since been estimated to be in the region of €1.36 billion. The Government said last year that it believed this should be shared on a 50-50 basis, between the taxpayer and those responsible for managing the institutions where the abuse took place.

Last July, Mr Quinn expressed his disappointment at the level of contributions offered by religious congregations to meet costs of the compensation, saying that offers from the religious congregations to date had fallen far short of the amount needed.

The department said yesterday that the letter had already been in train, before the questions received by the Taoiseach, and that the correspondence was "the official expression" of what Mr Quinn had asked of the congregations last summer.


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