Irish orders falling short of aid for abuse victims

by Dennis Coday

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Five years ago, 18 religious orders in Ireland pledged to set aside 110 million euros (about $160 million at the time) to pay for the treatment for survivors of institutional abuse, but to date they are about 40 million euros short of that figure, The Irish Independent is reporting.

The orders, which ran various schools and residential homes for children and vulnerable adults in Ireland, including the Christian Brothers and the Daughters of Charity, turned over only 72 million euros to the Residential Institutions Statutory Fund, or RISF.

Some 15,000 people are thought to be eligible for grants from RISF, which is to begin issuing funds in January.  

The orders have blamed the depressed property market for the shortfall, according the The Independent, which quote an unnamed source as saying: "They made the commitment at the time based on property and property prices. Obviously, as we all know, their value has fallen since then."

Ireland’s education minister has written to the orders requesting that they immediately sell surplus property so they can meet this commitment.

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