Pay-Outs for Abuse 'Should Be Increased'

Daily Mail (London), May 25, 2009 | Go to article overview

Pay-Outs for Abuse 'Should Be Increased'


Byline: Catherine Fegan

RELIGIOUS orders embroiled in the child abuse scandal were under intense pressure last night to pay out more to their victims.

The news comes as Ombudsman for Children Emily Logan warns that not all children in residential care are being independently inspected.

Two senior Catholic figures, along with the Minister for Finance, yesterday insisted the orders revisit the compensation deal and give more to those abused in their institutions over decades.

The Ryan report, published last week, catalogued a litany of sexual, physical and emotional torture by 800 priests and nuns who were not named.

Opposition leaders have called for a renegotiation of the compensation deal which meant the religious orders were liable for only 10 per cent of the estimated $1.2billion compensation bill.

Cardinal Sean Brady's special advisor, Father Tim Bartlett, said that the orders should pay more than the $127million capped by the 2002 agreement with the State.

He said: 'I believe there is no question but that the agreement must be looked at again.

'In my personal view, they need to pay more.'

Speaking on Radio Ulster, Fr Bartlett said the next step for the Church was 'genuine repentance'.

The Minister for Finance, Brian Lenihan, said the Catholic Church should contribute more but that there are legal obstacles to any review of the redress deal.

But Taoiseach Brian Cowen refused to pressure the Church.

'I don't think it's helpful for me to speculate beyond saying that the Government will look at all aspects of this and see what areas can be reopened and see what areas where this might not be possible,' he said.

'We will take some legal advice on the agreement itself and take considered advices and views at that stage from various ministers who had a role.'

Miss Logan told RTE it was incorrect for the HSE to say all children in residential care were assured of independent inspection. …

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