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Dublin: 12 °C Monday 1 September, 2014

Public inquiry into historical child abuse in NI begins today

The inquiry will focus on claims of abuse by institutions run by organisations like churches and the state in Northern Ireland.

An internal view of the courtroom at Banbridge, Northern Ireland, as a public inquiry into historical child abuse begins today.
An internal view of the courtroom at Banbridge, Northern Ireland, as a public inquiry into historical child abuse begins today.
Image: Paul Faith/PA Wire/Press Association Images

THE NORTHERN IRELAND public inquiry into institutional abuse of children is to begin today.
The Inquiry will commence its oral hearings in the former Banbridge Courthouse at 2pm.

The alleged abuse at 13 Catholic, secular, local authority and juvenile detention institutions in Northern Ireland between 1922 and 1995 will be investigated by by the Historical Institutional Abuse inquiry.

Abuse

Speaking in September, the Chairman, Sir Anthony Hart, said the Inquiry had received 363 applications from people claiming to have suffered abuse.

While many of the victims are living in Northern Ireland other applications were received from Britain, approximately 20 were received from the Republic of Ireland and and a “significant number” were received from Australia.

Today’s hearings will initially focus on Institutions at Termonbacca and Sisters of Nazareth, Bishop Street in Derry with dates of subsequent hearings to be announced in due course.

Inquiry

In total there are three other Catholic homes being investigated are: Nazareth House and Nazareth Lodge children’s homes in Belfast and the De La Salle Boy’s Home, Rubane House in Kircubbin, County Down.

Barnardo’s Sharonmore Project and Barnardo’s Macedon in Newtownabbey are the two  secular voluntary homes under investigation.

The three local authority homes are: Kincora Boy’s Home in Belfast, Lissue Children’s Unit in Lisburn and Bawnmore Children’s Home in Newtownabbey.

St Patrick’s Training School in Belfast, Lisnevin Training School in County Down and Rathgael Training School, Bangor in County Down are the the three juvenile justice institutions under investigation.

Read: 19,044 referrals about child abuse concerns were received in 2012>

Read: ‘Scant evidence’ that Mayo/Sligo diocese told gardaí about child abuse>

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