Local Minister Malcolm Noonan says he’s struggling to take in the scale of how the state failed to protect it’s citizens in the Mother and Baby Homes.
The Commission of Investigation has found 9 thousand children died in the 18 institutions examined.
The 3,000 page report paints a stark picture of the thousands of women and children who were stigmatised and cruelly treated – which was supported and condoned by church and state.
177 ‘illegitimate’ children in Thomastown County Home died in infancy or early childhood.
Most of the children born to single mothers died from starvation and malnourishment.
A inspector described others as ‘dying from neglect’.
54% of the mothers who were in Thomastown experienced the death of at least one child.
A former groundskeeper in Thomastown gave evidence to the Commission that he was asked to burn records thought to be about burials in the mass graveyard known locally as the Shanks Yard.
Junior Minister Noonan says he’s still trying to get to grips with the enormity of the cruelty exposed in the report.
The Taoiseach says the Mother and Baby Homes report highlights a “dark, difficult and shameful” chapter in Ireland’s history.
The Commission’s found their cruel treatment and stigmatisation was supported and condoned by church and state.
Following its recommendations, a redress scheme is to be set up and legislation will be brought forward so survivors can access their birth information.
Taoiseach Michael Martin says the scale of the suffering is hard to comprehend.