Zappone backs dig at mother and baby home

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Zappone backs dig at mother and baby home
Zappone backs dig at mother and baby home
Children’s Minister Katherine Zappone (PA Archive).
Children’s Minister Katherine Zappone (PA Archive).
Wayne O'Connor

Burial grounds will be analysed and investigated at a mother and baby home in Cork if evidence shows a geophysical survey is necessary, according to the Children’s Minister Katherine Zappone.

The Bessborough Mother and Baby Home is one of 18 being examined by a Commission of Inquiry into burials at former county homes and similar institutions. Ms Zappone said if the commission recommends carrying out further work she will support it.

Similar geophysical surveys, such as mapping and an archaeological analysis of the area, have been carried out at mother and baby homes in Tuam, Co Galway, and Sean Ross Abbey in Co Tipperary.

The commission has examined the burial plot and historical records at Bessborough, but officials say no “invasive work” such as digging has been carried out at the site.

Yesterday, Ms Zappone told the Dáil a geophysical survey would take place “should there be evidence about the records that more work needs to be done in that regard”.

She is due to receive a report next month from the commission investigating records and practices at such homes.

Experts are also examining if it is possible to gather DNA samples from survivors of the Tuam Mother and Baby Home to compare them with remains at the site. A spokesperson for the Department of Children said the Criminal Justice Act does not provide a legal basis for such sampling from possible relatives.

Irish Independent


Source: Irish