An event to honour survivors of Magdalene Laundries will be held in Dublin this summer.

The Justice for Magdalenes Research Group has announced that it hopes to bring together over 200 survivors during the two-day gathering on 5 and 6 June.

Lord Mayor of Dublin, Councillor Mícheál Mac Donncha, announced at last night's meeting of city councillors that the event will be supported by his office and held at the Mansion House.

He also said the Dublin City Council Area Committee has agreed to allocate funding for the initiative, with the final amount to be voted on later this month.

The JFMR group hopes to raise further money for the event through sponsorship.

JFMR is calling on the Department of Justice as the holder of the contact details of the estimated 800 survivors to assist in formally contacting the survivors on its behalf.

The 2013 Quirke Report, which examined, among other issues, how a redress scheme would operate, recommended that the State provide practical assistance to allow survivors to meet and interact with other Magdalene women.

The group also wants survivors to discuss an appropriate memorial to the laundries, another recommendation of the Quirke Report.

In a statement, the Department of Justice said it was not notified of the pending conference by the Lord Mayor's office or by Dublin City Council but assistance will be "offered if requested".

However, the statement warned that the assistance could not extend to providing the addresses and personal details of women who applied for compensation under the Magdalene Redress Scheme.

"It would plainly be in breach of the Data Protection Acts to divulge that data to any outside body. It would also be a breach of trust of the women concerned, many of whom have no wish to have their past residence in Magdalene institutions made known publicly.

"Nonetheless, if a formal request is made in relation to this conference the Department would welcome the opportunity to discuss it with Dublin City Council".

It also added that the focus of the department remains on the payment to applicants under the Magdalene ex-gratia scheme.

"The scheme remains open and 12 new applications have been received so far this year. To date, 686 applicants have been paid a total of €25.7m and further €258,000 in legal costs has been paid out".

Speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, JFMR member Dr Katherine O'Donnell said the group would be willing to give the invitations to the Department of Justice to send out, ensuring there was no breach of data confidentiality.

This was, Dr O'Donnell said, the bare minimum that could be done, adding it was time for the Minister for Justice to take leadership on the issue.

Dr O'Donnell pointed out that, as part of the redress scheme, the State had promised to bring the Magdalene women together.

"The very, very bare minimum that they can do now, and that the Minister really should be seen to take leadership on, is sending invitations for this gathering".

She added that laundries were the "worst kind of prison" because women were stripped of their identities and not allowed to make friendships.

This event would, she said, allow survivors to come together.

Dr O'Donnell said the gathering would also allow women to discuss the kind of memorial they would like. 

She explained that many survivors have said they would like memorials, in the form of social housing.

This would be ideally situated on the site of the Sean McDermott Street laundry, she said, adding that she would like to see a museum established on the site, to remember the dark heritage.