Written answers

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Department of Justice and Equality

Magdalen Laundries Report

Photo of Maureen O'SullivanMaureen O'Sullivan (Dublin Central, Independent)
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85. To ask the Minister for Justice and Equality when the archive of the interdepartmental committee on the Magdalen laundries will be made available. [9177/17]

Photo of Frances FitzgeraldFrances Fitzgerald (Dublin Mid West, Fine Gael)
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The archive of State records of the Inter-Departmental Committee on the Magdalen Laundries (the McAleese archive) is held in the Department of An Taoiseach. The McAleese report specifically states that it was agreed that the most appropriate course of action would be that the archive of the Committee’s work would be deposited with An Taoiseach. The records provided by the religious congregations concerned were returned to them and are not part of the State archive.

The religious congregations involved gave full access to the Inter Departmental Committee and its report provides a wealth of information, in anonymised form, for those interested in research.

Both sets of records contain very sensitive personal data. In relation to the records held by the religious congregations, I am informed that a person who had been in the Magdalen Laundry concerned will be given access to their own records. As regards general access, that is a matter for the congregations themselves subject to the Data Protection Acts. In relation to the State archive there are no plans to make it available publicly at this time and, at all events, the records are subject to the Data Protection Acts.


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