Fine Gael has criticised the ‘selective release’ of the clerical child abuse report, saying it should be published without further delay.
Details of the report of the Commission Investigating Clerical Child Abuse in the Archdiocese of Dublin were printed in yesterday’s Sunday Independent in spite of the fact that the report has not yet been published.
“The investigation has taken nine years and until today the integrity of the process involved was preserved. The shocking revelation contained within the report will inevitably cause enormous stress to the many victims and it is essential that all necessary arrangements are in place to provide counselling to those in need of help on the report’s publication,” said Alan Shatter, Fine Gael spokesperson for children.
The report’s release to the media should not be given a priority over its availably to victims of clerical abuse or the availability to them of support services.
“No public interest is served in selected extracts from the report being cynically drip-fed to the media by self-serving cabinet ministers in the hope of future, personal, favourable media coverage,” Mr Shatter continued.
Mr Shatter has called on the Justice Minister to clarify whether copies of the report have been furnished to his Cabinet colleagues and to state who is responsible for the selective leaks published today.
He added that the Government continues to fail to provide essential protection for our children.
The Dublin Rape Crisis Centre (DRCC) has also expressed its dismay that the Commission's report on clerical sexual abuse in the archdiocese of Dublin was leaked to the press prematurely.
"This leak to the press is extremely irresponsible and a further example of the lack of appreciation of the damage that continues to be visited upon victims and their families," said Ellen O'Malley-Dunlop, chief executive of the DRCC.
Ms O'Malley-Dunlop advised that victims of abuse can contact the 24-hour national helpline for victims of rape and secual abuse on 1800 77 88 88.
Ireland as a society cannot afford to be put under the world's spotlight at this time hence the obsessive secrecy involved in this report. Even the publication of the Ryan Report earlier in the year only scratched the surface of what has truly taken place by the religious orders in this country. Let's not have exclamations of 'ooh's' and 'aah's' on publication in feigned disgust at what you read. Put into action a strategy that will protect our children against all predators in society. Even the judiciary cannot decide what constitutes rape! One has to wonder why!