Elaine Byrne: We need to stop being afraid to say what really happened to these girls

When we talk about mother and baby homes, we keep on finding ways to avoid saying certain words and that needs to change

17th January, 2021
Elaine Byrne: We need to stop being afraid to say what really happened to these girls
Elaine Byrne: We must stop being afraid of giving a name to what happened

In the first decade of Irish Independence, the word “rape” is referenced on the Dáil record on just a handful of occasions. Politicians were concerned that rabbits were causing “immense damage to crops throughout the country”, particularly the rape crop. TDs were angered by attempted rapes by British forces and a “party of Specials with blackened faces” during the War of Independence.

In 1927, Kevin O’Higgins, the...

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