Irish PM's workhouse apology

The Irish prime minister has made a tearful apology to the thousands of women locked up in Catholic-run workhouses known as Magdalene laundries between 1922 and 1996. Records confirmed 10,012 women spent time in the workhouses across the country.

Magdalene survivor: Kenny 'really did us proud'

As Ireland's Taoiseach offered a state apology to survivors of the Magdalene laundries, twenty women who were locked up of in one the workhouses watched.

Maureen Sullivan, who was 12 when she was sent to a Magdalene laundry when her father died, said Enda Kenny had given survivors their lives back.

"I'm proud now of the leader of our country. I can say that for the first time."

Maureen Sullivan (left) and Kathleen Janette of Madalene Survivors Together
Maureen Sullivan (left) and Kathleen Janette of Magdalene Survivors Together after hearing Taoiseach Enda Kenny's state apology Credit: Niall Carson/PA Wire

"I was never proud of anything in Ireland until today. He did the whole country proud and we re-wrote history this evening."

"He didn't hold back on anything

"He really did us proud. Now we can go on with our lives and we know that we've got an apology, and he's taken responsibility. It's just fantastic", she added.

Members of Madalene Survivors Together i
Members of Magdalene Survivors Together in Dublin Credit: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Read: Apology for Irish workhouse women

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Ireland confirms Magdalene laundry compensation

Ireland's Taoiseach Enda Kenny has confirmed that a government compensation fund will be set up for women forced to work in Magdalene laundries.

The president of the Law Reform Commission Judge John Quirke undertake a three-month review and make recommendations on payments to surviving women.

Mr Kenny also outlined plans to provide support, including medical cards, psychological and counselling services to survivors.

He made the announcement as he apologised "unreservedly" for the "hurt and stigma" they had suffered, as a result of the time spent in the Catholic-run workhouses.

Irish PM apologises over Magdalene laundries

The Irish prime minister broke into tears as he made an historic and emotionally-charged state apology to survivors of the Magdalene laundries today.

Enda Kenny received a standing ovation in parliament after he described the Catholic-run workhouses as the "nation's shame" and accepted the state's direct involvement.

Irish Taoiseach Enda Kenny

Mr Kenny said:

"I, as Taoiseach, on behalf of the state, the Government and our citizens deeply regret and apologise unreservedly to all those women for the hurt that was done to them, and for any stigma they suffered, as a result of the time they spent in a Magdalene Laundry".

Inside a derelict Dublin Magdalene laundry

Magdalene Laundries
Women were locked up in Catholic-run workhouses known as Magdalene laundries between 1922 and 1996. Credit: Julien Behal/PA Wire
Magdalene Laundries
The now derelict Sisters of Our Lady of Charity Magdalene Laundry on Sean McDermott St in Dublin. Credit: Julien Behal/PA Wire
Magdalene Laundries
The front door and hallway of the now derelict Sisters of Our Lady of Charity Magdalene Laundry. Credit: Julien Behal/PA Wire

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