We must en­sure this doesn’t hap­pen again

The Irish Mail on Sunday - - MORE -

MAG­DA­LENE sur­vivors have said Pres­i­dent Hig­gins’s words of apol­ogy this week are ‘not enough’ to en­sure fu­ture gen­er­a­tions never suf­fer as they have.

Pres­i­dent Hig­gins, ad­dress­ing over 220 sur­vivors from across the coun­try, the UK, the USA and Aus­tralia at an hon­orary re­cep­tion this week, said ‘Ire­land had failed’ them and apol­o­gised to them.

Many of the women said the event was a heal­ing ex­pe­ri­ence but that more must be done to re­move Mag­da­lene-like in­sti­tu­tions across the world.

Ju­lia Sweeney, 58, was put in the Don­ny­brook laun­dry at age 15 be­cause she ran away from home. She said: ‘It’s al­right hear­ing those words but ac­tion speaks louder. Don’t let this hap­pen again… Ed­u­cat­ing peo­ple is so im­por­tant. Stop de­vel­op­ing th­ese in­sti­tu­tions in other parts of the world and learn from th­ese mis­takes.’

The Gal­way woman said: ‘It’s hard for me to tell my story to­day, but I feel more Trav­eller women like me need to share their sto­ries.’

Ac­tion: Ju­lia Sweeney, 58

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