donderdag, april 18, 2019

Mother-and-baby home inquiry: hundreds of burial plots unknown

18 - 4-2019

Tuam home commission dismisses archaeologist’s suggestion of ‘burial vault’

An expert working for the order of nuns which ran the Tuam mother-and-baby home in Co Galway argued in January this year that the underground structure containing infant remains at the site may have been “designed as a burial vault and then used as such”.
The suggestion was rejected by the Commission of Investigation into Mother and Baby Homes, which found in its interim report released on Wednesday that the structure “was not a recognised burial ground or purpose-built burial chamber”. 
The commission said the chambered structure “did not provide for the dignified interment of human remains” and was “likely” to be related to treatment of sewage and/or waste water.

In a statement, a spokesman for the congregation said that after being asked to respond to a draft of the report the order commissioned a forensic archaeologist to assist in the process. “The brief was simply to examine the archaeological elements and prepare a report. He did so and submitted it to the commission. The commission has examined that report and has rejected its findings, as is their absolute right.”

Council response

The commission also found it is “likely the burials were conducted on the instructions of the sisters”. And it said Galway County Council did not respond when it shared draft and technical reports with the local authority in 2017 and 2018.
employees of the council “must have known about the burials” as they worked on the site.

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