Tuesday, 15 October 2019

Questions (254)

John Brassil

Question:

254. Deputy John Brassil asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if he will consider lifting the limitation period relating to all thalidomide claims; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [41738/19]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

The question of how best to support thalidomide survivors remains under consideration by my colleague, the Minister for Health, who holds primary policy responsibility for this area.  In responding to the Deputy, I am also conscious of the fact that this is an area which is the subject of ongoing proceedings before the High Court to which Minister Harris is a party.

The Minister for Health has confirmed the Government’s intention to bring forward Heads of a Bill to provide for a package of health and personal social services for the Irish survivors of thalidomide. It is understood from the Department of Health that this work is still on-going and that Department remains in liaison with Thalidomide Ireland and other stakeholders on these matters.

My Department is engaged in an ongoing review of the broader Statute of Limitations regime in Ireland.  However in terms of the question of any changes that might be made to the law as part of a specific Department of Health policy response in this area, the Government will, of course, be guided by the Minister for Health including in the context of the package of supports that he will be proposing to Government under his Department's anticipated Health Bill.