Ireland- Orders responsible for Magdalene laundries refuse to cooperate, SNAP responds
Statement by David Clohessy of St. Louis, Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 566 9790, SNAPclohessy@aol.com)
The four orders that ran the Magdalene laundry laundries, The Mercy Sisters, the Sisters of Our Lady of Charity, the Sisters of Charity and the Good Shepherd Sisters, have stated they will not contribute to the redress fund for the victims of their institutions. Additionally, Taoiseach Enda Kenny has stated he cannot force the orders to contribute. In response, a victims group called Magdalene Survivors Together has demanded the government eliminate the charitable status of the orders and that they receive no more state funding.
To refuse to take responsibility for decades of abuse directly related to these religious institutions is utterly disgraceful. These women are entitled justice and receiving compensation from these orders would only be scratching the surface of what is needed to begin to recover.
We urge these religious “charities” to reexamine their decisions. By blatantly dodging responsibility, they are preventing the at least 600 women from beginning to truly heal. We also encourage the state to consider the plea from Magdalene Survivors Together and revoke theses orders’ charitable status until they are willing to cooperate with the redress for the Magdalene Laundry victims. Refusing to contribute is the opposite of charitable; it is callous and selfish.
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
The Attorneys General of forty states have inquired about the grand jury process in Pennsylvania. Let's get statewide investigations going in fifty states.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.