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House of the Oireachtas/ Irish Examiner story “Statutory Fund”

January 23, 2012

Other Questions – Proposed Legislation

Thursday, 19 January 2012

  7.  Deputy Martin Ferris  asked the Minister for Education and Skills  Information on Ruairí Quinn  Zoom on Ruairí Quinn   the date on which he expects the Residential Institutions Redress Statutory Fund Bill to be established; and if he will provide an update on his engagement with survivors of institutional abuse on the proposed legislation.

Deputy Ruairí Quinn: Work on the drafting of the residential institutions statutory fund Bill is at an advanced stage and I hope to be in a position to publish the Bill in the coming weeks. I had a very constructive meeting with groups representing survivors of residential institutional abuse on 22 July last when we discussed the Government’s approach to the proposed statutory fund to support the needs of victims of residential institutional abuse. Attendees at the meeting raised a number of issues regarding aspects of the proposed approach as set out in the general scheme of the residential institutions statutory fund Bill. I have also received a number of submissions on particular aspects of the proposed legislation, which are being considered as the drafting process continues.

Deputy Seán Crowe:  We all agree on the need to keep victims in the loop through discussions and meaningful engagement. A difficulty arises in determining who represents victims. There is no commonality on the issue of how the resources will be spent and so forth. The main issue is to try to involve and engage victims in the process. It would be helpful to give victims a role and say on the final legislation.

Deputy Ruairí Quinn:The Bill is still in the process of being finalised and will be introduced in this session. The points the Deputy makes will be taken into consideration when we have the text before us.

Deputy Brendan Smith: I ask the Minister to ensure the views conveyed at a meeting of 22 July last between all the relevant groups and officials of his Department are taken into account. Some of the groups expressed concern about what they understood would be the broad scope of the work of the statutory fund. The education board has done good work supporting survivors and their children and grandchildren, particularly in the education area. I understand the membership of the board, which still has money to disburse, will fall below quorate in mid-February. It is unlikely the proposed legislation will be passed by then, although the Minister will, I am sure, have the full support of the House in that regard. I understand an amendment could be made to the legislation that established the education board to enable it to continue its work. It is important to avoid instability or uncertainty in supporting survivors and their families through education. The board has funding and is supporting many people in a worthwhile manner. It is important to ensure survivors, their children and, in some cases, grandchildren, are supported through education.

Deputy Ruairí Quinn: The Deputy is partially correct. The board has money available to it but also has ongoing liabilities arising from educational commitments it has made which extend beyond one year. I will get a note for the Deputy on the issue. Subject to confirmation, I am of the opinion, based on advice I have read and which I am now remembering, that the board’s commitments match the funds it has on deposit. For this reason, it will not make any fresh or new allocations. It is not necessary, therefore, to extend the lifetime of the board, as the Deputy suggests. I will confirm this in writing.

Deputy Seán Crowe: When will the heads of the Bill be published? On the Magdalene—–

Deputy Ruairí Quinn: We have another question on that issue. In case we do not reach it, the Magdalene survivors do not qualify in that regard.


Statutory fund will support the former residents of institutions

By Catherine Shanahan

Wednesday, July 06, 2011

THE Government is to proceed with legislation to establish a statutory fund with the power to arrange and grant-aid a range of services to support victims of residential institutional abuse.

The Residential Institutions Statutory Fund will be funded by the €110 million in cash offered to it by religious congregations by way of compensation to those abused in their care.

It follows extensive consultations with survivors of residential abuse and a public consultation process.

The seven-member fund will be run by a chief executive answerable to the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) and will fall within the scope of the Ombudsman and Freedom of Information legislation.

Announcing the measure yesterday, Education and Skills Minister Ruairi Quinn said more than 13,000 former residents who have received awards from the Residential Institutions Redress Board will be eligible to apply for support from the fund.

“Some former residents advocate a simple distribution of the available money,” he said.

“However, I believe that the fund should target resources at services to support former residents’ needs, such as counselling, psychological support services and mental health services, health and personal social services, educational services and housing services.”

To date, contributions of €20.6m have been received towards the statutory fund. These and the remaining contributions to be received will be invested in an investment account to be established by the National Treasury Management Agency (NTMA).

The fund will take over the functions of the Education Finance Board for abuse survivors, which will be dissolved. As responsibility for information for survivors will also be taken on by the fund, funding of survivor groups by the Department of Education will cease.

The fund will have the power to hold and dispose of land or an interest in land, and may acquire, hold and dispose of any other property. Two of its members will be former residents of institutions.

Under the proposed legislation, anyone who knowingly makes a false statement or produces a false document for the purposes of obtaining assistance from the fund will be guilty of an offence and liable on summary conviction to a fine of up to €1,500 or imprisonment for up to 6 months, or both. If convicted on indictment, the fine imposed can be up to €13,000 or imprisonment for up to 3 years, or both.

  1. The Statutory fund is completely illegal and should be recognized as so it was inveted by illgeal findings and no proper research was carried out on the reports to see how this Government can help HEAL ALL SURVIVORS ON A PERSONAL BASIS. EDUCATION FUND? by an EDUCATION MINISTER? who has failed so far as to prove his own claims on the this statutory fund.
    18000 survivors came to redress Mr. Quinn Minister of Education 18000 where is the prove they personally benefitted from any funds at all. I challenge you proof?. And now you claim the majority of survivors have voted for the Statutory fund? prove it Sir? I challenge it now asap so you cannot add to this bull shite. you know as so does your office there are no reports in layman’s terms that survivors themselves would understand what it all means to them personally. Out of 600 million euros from the Religious compensation first written in the Irish Times you Minister Quinn had seen this as your opportunity to grab back the cost of the State’s Guilt as you said in the Dail live on air 100% guilty as the Church of this scandalous abuse, but you sir have become so proud of your self as to gain/grab back this much needed money to heal the damage done to 18000 survivors of this religious side of 100% abuse you want to actually win this money back using the tax payer’s name in vain. Yet you do not give one shite for the tax payer when it comes to the bank bailouts, or the in house tribunals like Ahern himself who walked out with millions in his pockets.
    Once more you lousy scoundrel younger children of survivors were left out in the cold not to be included in any funds, I guess you and your party do not see child development as educational? well nothing changes then does it? we are all back to square onewhen it all happened before to survivors AS CHILDREN. And now you and your want to steal the entitlements away from the slave labour of innocent women too. SHAME ON YOU MINISTER QUINN AND YOUR GOVERNMENTS

  2. THE STATUTORY FUND is to pay for what survivors did not get in the first place so they give them a fraction of 600 million well due to them from the religious and out of this fraction they the survivors have to actually pay for what they never got? an education?
    SURVIVORS THEMSELVES? they cannot see, they cannot hear they cannot eat, THEY CANNOT WALK, they cannot travel, they cannot manage alone, they are in the streets, homeless, rest-homes, hospitals, welfare cuts, budget cuts, no family to support them, alone, depressed, suicidal, rehabs for drink, drugs, prisons, wheelchairs, serious health sicknesses, weaknesses, falling through all the safety nets, no real support with qualified, experienced, staff, mental health,suffering relationship issues, suffering family life styles, and institutionalized to such a rotten extent. No confidence,
    This has to be cleared up and a proper system has to be set up once and for all.
    Any such person who claims that they are representing survivors better have had a mandate, experienced working with abuse of such a large scale, must have qualifications to prove they were qualified at the time of representational,or they will be seen as fraudulent as I do believe if you are claiming to represent the most vulnerable of society and have neither qualifications, years of experience and especially without police checks then you are all guilty of making such false claims and should be brought before the courts.
    And if the Government and the Religious are dealing with such people they too are futher guilty of the same.
    Redress then should be reopened and reviewed and awards should be higher than previous as all needs should be met with the appropriate staff and all paid by the Government and Religious alike.

  3. Once more when one reads this high-class junk it just seems to say and speak to how high society is about to get a boost of 110 million to cover their wages, proof? the so called support groups are a bunch of rule makers and servants to deliver decisions made by both Government and Religious.

    Nothing written here for the average survivor to understand.

    the very reason these decisions by both Government and Religious need to be brought before the European High Court free of charge as part of human rights.

  4. once our names and data base are on thier registers . thats it nothing else. no way of understanding why thay are there. its useless to overseas survivers so why was our data base asked for .

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