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2 March 2014

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One year on from Taoiseach's apology and still no justice for Magdalene survivors

"A year on we still wait for the delivery of compensation and of services to those women. So let today in its own modest fashion, also be about all of us saying that this is not good enough. We demand justice for those women and for the survivors now."

OVER 100 people took part in an event in Glasnevin Cemetary on Sunday to honour the memory of the hundreds of women and girls who died while incarcerated in the Magdalene laundries.

The third annual 'Flowers for Magdalenes' event was addressed by Martina Keogh, a survivor of the Gloucester Street laundry; Claire McGettrick of Justice for Magdalenes and Mary Lou McDonald of Sinn Féin – a long time supporter and advocate on behalf of the Magdalene survivors.

In February 2013 Taoiseach Enda Kenny apologised to the women on behalf of the Government and the State for the hurt they endured, and promised to put in place "a process in place to help and support the women in their remaining years".

Mary Lou McDonald TD criticised the failure of the Taoiseach to deliver on his promise. Speaking to those in attendance, she said:

"A year on we still wait for the delivery of compensation and of services to those women. So let today in its own modest fashion, also be about all of us saying that this is not good enough. We demand justice for those women and for the survivors now."

She also noted that the nuns who ran the laundries have still not apologised and are refusing to contribute to the compensation fund:

“The lives of the women survivors have been and continue to be characterised by psychological suffering, poverty and stigma. They should not have to suffer further due to additional delays in the restorative justice process.”

Mary Lou and Magdalene survivor Martina Keogh
• Mary Lou McDonald TD with Magdalene survivor Martina Keogh

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