THE Gardai have today appealed to anyone in Clare who wishes to report a crime relating to a pregnancy and/or abuse involving their stay at a Mother and Baby Home to contact them.
To support the reporting of such crimes a dedicated email address is in place – MotherandBabyHomes@garda.ie, along with a confidential freephone number – 1800 555 222. Anyone who gets in touch regarding such matters will receive personal contact within 48 hours.
For the purpose of reporting to An Garda Síochána, the following options are available:
1. By emailing MotherandBabyHomes@garda.ie
2. By phoning the Garda Child Sexual Abuse Reporting Line on 1800 555 222. This is a confidential and free service available 24/7
3. Calling to your local Garda Station
In a statement the Gardai said, “An Garda Síochána will deal with any matters reported by complainants in a sensitive manner and will, where possible, progress matters through investigation.
“While it is our intention to effectively deal with all complaints and information received, there will be limitations as to the action we can take in some cases due to matters such as the loss of evidence over time or suspects and/or witnesses being deceased. Where these factors are present, An Garda Síochána will diligently explain such limitations to complainants.
“A dedicated team in An Garda Síochána has reviewed the report of the Mother and Baby Homes Commission to determine whether information in the report could form the basis for commencing criminal investigations.
“Having carefully considered the Commission Report, An Garda Síochána is of the view that there is insufficient detail in the report to commence criminal investigation at this moment. The report is anonymised and any proper investigation would not be possible without identification of individual parties affected by specific occurrences.
“As such, An Garda Síochána is appealing to anyone with information about crimes at Mother and Baby Homes to make contact with them so that such crimes can be investigated where possible.”
Owen Ryan has been a journalist with the Clare Champion since 2007, having previously worked for a number of other regional titles in Limerick, Galway and Cork.