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Written Answers – Residential Institutions Redress Scheme Thursday, 24 November 2011

February 2, 2012

  95.  Deputy Dominic Hannigan  Information on Dominic Hannigan  Zoom on Dominic Hannigan   asked the Minister for Education and Skills  Information on Ruairí Quinn  Zoom on Ruairí Quinn   if he has received any correspondence on the statutory trust fund for industrial school survivors; the steps he is taking to ensure that the trust, when set up, is run in a manner that is desired by the majority of survivors; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [36826/11]

Minister for Education and Skills (Deputy Ruairí Quinn): Information on Ruairí Quinn  Zoom on Ruairí Quinn  On 5th July last, I announced that the Government was proceeding with legislation to provide for the establishment of a statutory fund to support the needs of victims of residential institutional abuse, as endorsed by Dáil Éireann in the aftermath of the publication of the Ryan Report in 2009. The legislative proposals followed extensive consultations with survivors of residential abuse and the groups which support them, together with a public consultation process. In this context, the report on the consultation process and the General Scheme of the Residential Institutions Statutory Fund Bill were published on my Department’s website.

Some former residents advocated a simple distribution of the available money rather than the establishment of the Statutory Fund. However, as I outlined when I published the legislative proposals, I believe that the Fund should target resources at services to support former residents’ needs. The General Scheme outlines the range of services proposed.

I had a very constructive meeting with groups representing survivors of residential institutional abuse on 22nd July last, when we discussed the Government’s approach to the proposed Statutory Fund. Attendees at that 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 from groups and individuals in relation to the proposed legislation. Work is progressing on the drafting of the Bill and the various views expressed to date are being considered as the drafting process continues.

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