Thursday, 17 April 2014

Questions (196, 197)

Martin Heydon

Question:

196. Deputy Martin Heydon asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of cases of Magdalen survivors from Stanhope Street that are being processed under the Magdalen restorative justice scheme; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [18492/14]

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Martin Heydon

Question:

197. Deputy Martin Heydon asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if the lack of files being provided by the Sisters of Mercy from Stanhope Street is affecting those former residents of Stanhope Street in making applications under the Magdalen restorative justice scheme; if there will be an appeals mechanism for those cases if there is a negative response to an application; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [18493/14]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 196 and 197 together.

I can confirm that 103 applications have been received relating to St Mary's Training Centre, Stanhope Street. Twenty have received their lump sum payment and a further 8 have received letters of formal offer. Provisional assessments of the applicant's length of stay in St Mary's Training Centre, Stanhope Street have been made in a further 12 cases.

The remaining cases require further investigation. As with all of the specified institutions, if the relevant religious congregation has no clear record, my officials will carry out a thorough examination checking whatever records are available to support the claim. The application forms requested applicants to consent to the provision of personal information to my Department by any Government Department, agency, health or educational institution and the religious congregations for the purpose of verification in relation to their application. The applicant will also be asked to provide any relevant information that could corroborate her claim that she was in a specific institution for a period of time.

My officials will make an assessment on the basis of the records and statements available as to whether, on the balance of probabilities, the applicant was admitted to and worked in one of the 12 institutions covered by the scheme.

The provisional assessment will be set out in a letter to the applicant. If the applicant accepts the provisional assessment made, a letter of formal offer will issue to her. If the applicant disagrees with the assessment she can, in the first instance, request her case to be reviewed by an officer of a higher grade. If she is still not satisfied with the decision of the reviewer, it can be appealed to the Ombudsman's Office.