Neglect and death of 800 kids in Galway, Ireland

35 posts in this topic

In the eyes of the Bon Secours nuns, the babies were little bastards and deserved to die for the sins of their loose mothers.

The fathers, of course, are not mentioned and anyway and were led astray by those wanton women.

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Turns out that theres a few homes across the country which have seemingly similar rates of death as the Tuam home, including CofI and county council ran establishments.

The Irish government is poised to make an apology for their (not insubstantial) part in the case and theres going to be a tribunal with judicial powers to investigate the whole matter and establish the facts.

Unfortunately so much of this happened in the distant past that most involved are now dead so its unlikely any matrons will get prosecuted for neglect.

 

This whole thing is just getting stranger/ more facinating the more you hear about the details of it.

 

It was common that the pregancy was induced over a month early which was one major factor in baby deaths, as obviously a premature baby isnt as strong so would need more medical care and attention. So early (induced) baby = weak baby = (very often) dead baby

(now, you could go into the contradiction of saying that abortion is wrong, and then medically inducing a pregnancy which leads to a dead baby)

 

One case that was reported at the weekend is of a 15year old who gave birth via caeserian (which is literally is someone taking a stanley knife and slitting a gash through your lower stomach muscles leaving a very raw painful wound which is very prone to infection) and rather than follow the doctors explicit advice to let her recover for a few weeks, she was sent out to the fields to work - and died within a couple of weeks.

 

Theres a whole other tangent that is emerging of medical experiments on babies without the parents consent, testing vacines. Unfortunately one batch of babies was given a vacine for horses not humans!

 

The thing about all this is that theres masses of documentation, reports, published results of enquiries and even parlimentary records dating back to the 30s so you'd expect many more shocking details of neglect and death over the summer as journalists go through whatevers available in the public domain.

 

The question now is, where is the line between chronic ineptitude, deliberate neglect or indeed manslaughter/ murder?

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its complicated though.

 

and the complication is that the whole idea of locking up folks in homes was started before the foundation of the state with workhouses and conditions and funding in those led to many deaths of starvation and disease.

But the only sin of those folks was being poor.

 

Also from before the foundation of the state you also had mental homes which had conditions similar (but not quite as bad) as the laundries/ mother and baby homes. Many 1000s ended up in there before it "peaked in 1963 at 20,000". Thats the population of county Leitrim basically locked up on the request of their family.

The paitents there had holes drilled in their skull and parts of their brains removed. Others got electro shock therapy.

And even if you werent medically damaged by your stay, it left deeper psychological problems.

And the only sin of those folks was suffering depression, or being a bit arty, or flamboiant, or a burdon on the family. Actually, any excuse really.

 

So what is absolutely alien to us to be sent to an institution to get "fixed", probably seemed fairly normal in those days.

And not all of it was done in the name of morality or the church.

(and all of it was funded and inspected by the government)

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So what is absolutely alien to us to be sent to an institution to get "fixed", probably seemed fairly normal in those days.

And not all of it was done in the name of morality or the church.

(and all of it was funded and inspected by the government)

 

Yes, but who dictated Government policy? The pulpit!

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seeing as you mention the place, theres a fascinating but disturbing article on Bessboro in the irish times today

Basically a girl goes in there to have her baby. Neither die or anything. So all is good?

No. When her father applies to have her released, the neighbour at home and the Kerry County council secretary veto the release!

 

to quote the article

 

 

The details of this case, buried in the local authority records of Kerry County Council, demonstrate the complex dynamics and social forces that led to so many women entering and remaining in mother and baby homes in independent Ireland such as the Tuam mother and baby home which is the focus of the current controversy.

Local decision-making on why women were committed and their length of stay was influenced by a range of factors, including fear of the woman’s potential relapse and the threat that she posed to the local community, and the potential reputational damage to the institution. Social and class bias was even more apparent as demonstrated in the concerns over the perceived character of the parents.

 

Furthermore, the potential inquiry has to be as comprehensive as possible and include other institutions that “unmarried women” and their children were in: county homes – former workhouses which were multifunctional welfare/health care institutions – remain ignored in the current debates although 70 per cent of lone and single mothers and their children ended up in these institutions throughout the 20th century.

http://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/respectable-woman-s-opinion-counted-for-more-than-poor-family-by-local-government-official-1.1826270?page=1

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looks like Tuam wasnt the worst of it.

http://www.irishtimes.com/news/social-affairs/religion-and-beliefs/inquiry-faces-daunting-task-unravelling-the-truth-behind-mother-and-baby-homes-1.1827598

 

 

As for burials, we know that 796 infants died at the Tuam home run by the Sisters of the Bon Secours. But other homes such as Castlepollard are estimated to hold the remains of up to 3,200 babies.

theres a few RTE primetime documentaries from over the years on the homes which have been made available again seeing as the topic is again live.

http://www.rte.ie/player/de/tag/RTEInvestigates/

 

The one on the baby trials is interesting, as is the fact mentioned in the programme that the homes broke the Nürnberg convention which bans experimentation with humans without proper consent, a rule introduced in the aftermath of what happened in places like Dachau.

http://www.rte.ie/player/de/show/10291719/

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Nothing to do with Germany. Why have the mods not deleted this?

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Because this is the International subforum. Is that really you, Optimista?

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Did someone delete a post from optimista because it didn't have anything to do with Germany or something?

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I think it must be some form of pervasive, pernicious, chronic butt-hurt that is afflicting poor optimista, Hutcho.

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A different take on this story:

http://annaraccoon.com/2014/06/11/septic-mania/

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It is, however, nothing more than a different take. My mother and her siblings went through those homes - her treatment was inhumane - but she survived.

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