Magdalene Laundry

Irish Sunday Business Post – Most vulnerable Magdalene survivors to be compensated under new law

The Irish Sunday Business Post reported on the long-awaited Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Bill that was passed by the Dáil recently.

 

Reporting on the passing of the bill, the Irish Sunday Business Post reported:

 

‘Around 40 Magdalene Laundry survivors with intellectual disabilities are finally going to be paid compensation thanks to the passage of new legislation.

Although more than 500 women received lump sums of up to €100,000 over the past year, it was not possible for compensation to be given to those who lacked the capacity to apply to the scheme.

But the long-awaited Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Bill passed by the Dáil will allow this to happen.

It will provide for Magdalene Laundry survivors with capacity issues to have a person appointed by a court apply for compensation on their behalf, or to appoint a supporter to help them do so. An estimated 10,000 women did unpaid manual labour in the country’s ten such laundries between 1922 and 1996.

Fine Gael TD David Stanton, who chaired the justice committee hearings into the bill, said it would change the way the courts deal with people with capacity issues.’

 

Charlotte Gerada, Campaigns and Policy Advisor for IWSSN commented:

 

‘IWSSN was very keen that the benefits of the compensation go to the 40 survivors with capacity issues and not to opportunistic legal firms.

‘Very few of the 79 women that our organisation had helped to apply to the scheme had hired a lawyer.

‘Whilst most lawyers have accepted the non-adversarial, straightforward application process, there are a few who continue to see the scheme as an opportunity to generate income – putting it politely.’

 

Read the full article here.