Justice for Magdalenes
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Justice for Magdalenes

What Can I Do?

We encourage all concerned citizens — worldwide — to continue to put pressure on the Irish Government, Catholic and Protestant Churches and the media. Whether it's e-mail, a phone call, a letter or a quick visit to your local TD's office, every voice counts. Visit our About Us section and download our printable booklet; learn as much as you can about the abrogation of young girls' and women's rights and then educate everyone you know. Choose a category below that suits your interest and level of activism and support the cause for justice for Ireland's Magdalene Laundry survivors.

Right now, we need your help between 13-14 June 2011 to participate in an e-mail and social media campaign. Please see details here and learn what you can do!

Read the latest submitted Parliamentary Questions regarding justice for Magdalene survivors at KildareStreet.com.

Academics, Researchers, Filmmakers and Musicians All Concerned Citizens
Government, Church and Media Contacts Sample Letter Online Resources

Academics, Researcher, Filmmakers and Musicians

The co-ordinating committee of Justice for Magdalenes recently came to a decision to change our policy in relation to the provision of research assistance.

We certainly see the value of research projects, films, books and other ventures in getting the story of the Magdalenes out into the open, but unfortunately we are a small volunteer group and we must focus our efforts on what is important, i.e. achieving justice for Magdalenes. Therefore, we regret to say that going forward we cannot put as much time into assisting researchers as we have done in the past.

We don't wish to dissuade anyone from what they are doing; we just ask that you understand our time is limited and we need to devote it to real action for survivors.

With the recent upsurge in media coverage, we have received quite a number of invitations to various meetings, ceremonies and protests. We would love to have the time to attend all of these things but unfortunately we simply can't, as we must spend what little time we have in assisting survivors who contact us directly and pursuing our campaign plan. We would ask for your patience and understanding in this matter.

We would also like to take this opportunity to highlight the issue of survivors doing interviews. It is extraordinarily hard to get survivors to speak about their experiences, so an interview may not always be possible and we ask that you understand this. This approach of interviewing survivors often proves very exploitative (particularly in a media context) and it is our belief that enough has been written, said and aired about the 'exoticness' of survivor trauma. The real work must now be foremost: achieving justice for survivors and helping them meet daily needs in terms of housing, counselling, etc.

If anyone is looking for some educational reading material on the subject of the Magdalene Laundries and the surrounding culture of cruelty meted out by church and state we recommend the following:

  • Ireland's Magdalen Laundries and the Nation's Architecture of Containment by James M Smith
  • Do Penance or Perish by Frances Finnegan
  • Banished Babies by Mike Milotte
  • Suffer the Little Children by Mary Raftery and Eoin O'Sullivan
  • The God Squad by Paddy Doyle
  • Hannah's Shame by Derek Leinster
  • The Light in the Window by June Goulding
  • For the Love of My Mother by J.P. Rodgers
  • Maria Luddy, Prostitution and Irish Society, 1889-1940 (Cambridge University Press, 2007)
  • Maria Luddy, Women and Philantrophy in Nineteenth Century Ireland (Cambridge University Press, 1995)

If a researcher finds that they need more detailed answers, we will be happy to assist and offer limited time, but we do require that a Acrobat Reader documentWorking Agreement is completed and that expenses are covered as we have extremely limited resources.

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All Concerned Citizens

We encourage all global citizens to lend their voice to the cause for justice. If you are outside Ireland, let the government, churches and media know that 'the world is watching.' Use the contacts link to find mailing addresses, e-mail addresses, websites and phone numbers for relevant contacts in the government, churches and media. If you're uncertain of what to write or e-mail, use our Sample Letter. The power of the people's voice cannot be underestimated. Take five minutes and do what you can.

Send An Taioseach a strong message, as a citizen and concerned human being, to appeal for justice and to add your voice to the call for State acknowledgment of its complicity in remanding women and children to Magdalene Laundries. Click here and send an e-mail now.

Be sure to sign our online petition, too.

If you can make a donation, it is greatly appreciated and will be judiciously used. Justice for Magdalenes is committed to providing women with legal services, housing, counseling and other needs. Mail your check (all currencies accepted) to Justice for Magdalenes, Crocknahattina, Bailieborough, Co. Cavan, Republic of Ireland. If you need additional account details, please feel free to e-mail us.

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Online Resources

Justice for Magdalenes maintains a number of online presences in addition to this website. You may visit us on Facebook, follow us on Twitter, and be updated on the latest news, press releases and calls to action/campaigns. We also maintain Yahoo! groups devoted to academic research and general knowledge as well as an activism group (be prepared to roll up your sleeves if you choose to subscribe to the activism group!)

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