A State agency that was established to support survivors of institutional abuse has failed to do so, according to two former board members of Caranua who addressed the Oireachtas Committee on Education this morning.
In a joint statement Tom Cronin and Dr Mary Lodato, both themselves survivors of institutional abuse, reiterated their concerns that Caranua had failed to listen or even meet survivors.
Mr Cronin and Dr Lodato resigned their positions on the board last February in protest at what they saw as Caranua's failures.
Caranua announced several weeks ago that it was now winding down its operations.
Reading their joint submission Mr Cronin said what had happened to them as children was a shame on the nation, but what had been done to them since was a greater shame.
He said that as a survivor himself he had experienced the anger, hurt, despair and frustration of engaging with the Redress Commission and other State established resources.
He said that as a former board member of Caranua he had personally witnessed many survivors experience the same. He said Department of Education plans to elicit the views of survivors through an online survey would not work because most survivors do not have computers, and many cannot read or have limited literacy skills.
Dr Lodato said they supported the establishment of an independent survivor consultation forum, so that survivors could have a say in their own wellbeing.
The Department of Education has committed to establishing such a forum.