The Magdalene Laundries

(31 Posts)
FrameyMcFrame Tue 05-Feb-13 22:34:12

www.guardian.co.uk/world/2013/feb/05/magdalene-laundries-ireland-state-guilt
Makes me so sad and angry, this waste of lives. Slavery and torture.

kim147 Tue 05-Feb-13 22:37:08

Till 1996. WTAF

FrameyMcFrame Tue 05-Feb-13 22:47:59

Unbelievable isn't it.

The survivors must get compensation. Does anyone know if there is a campaign for this anywhere?

Darkesteyes Tue 05-Feb-13 23:36:16

DarkesteyesTue 05-Feb-13 22:45:38

I was brought up Catholic. (not Ireland,UK But i have an Italian parent.) Ive had nowhere near the experience of these women but being brought up in this religion you are made to feel a second class citezen just for being female.
I walked out on this religion when i left home. Told my mum last year that if something happened to me that i dont want a Catholic funeral. She asked why and then said "Dont be ridiculous" when i told her i want NO part of a religion that despises women. "of course they dont hate women" she said.

Just found this on twitter. Its a lady tweeting about her mum who was in a Magdelene laundry.
Its harrowing reading.

www.thejournal.ie/margaret-died-of-her-slave-related-injuries-a-magdalene-daughter-shares-her-story-780887-Feb2013/?utm_source=shortlink

Darkesteyes Tue 05-Feb-13 23:37:16

Also the vicious way my mum talks about women is awful. I had a job at our local convent and the sister in charge nit picked at me the whole time. After it turned into full scale bullying we had a falling out. I went home and told my mum who sided with the Sister.
I wrote a letter and quit.
It was a Saturday job from 2pm to 7pm.
Eight months later when i was signing on the Job Centre called me in and told me that while inquiring after my last job this cow had written on the form that i had left because i found the work very difficult.
the Sister obviously hoped id lose my benefit. But the JC said as it was only a Saturday afternoon job i couldnt be expected to live on 6.25 a fortnight so her viciousness didnt work. Cow.

FrameyMcFrame Wed 06-Feb-13 13:17:00

That twitter link is so upsetting. She had her life wasted, and never got to bring up her children. She had never even tasted coffee. So sad.

FastidiaBlueberry Wed 06-Feb-13 19:33:00

It was awful waking up to the reports on this this morning, made me glower with fury.

Can anyone really doubt that the Catholic church has in its history mostly been a force for terrible evil?

The crusades, the inquisitions, the burnings to death of human beings FGS, the rapes of children and the constant, steadfast hatred of half the human race - why the fuck are they still allowed to operate their mafia?

AbigailAdams Wed 06-Feb-13 19:41:54

You are right Fastidia. They are a huge barrier to human rights, women's in particular.

Truly horrific and barbaric. I can't quite get over them being in existence until 1996. How? Why?

Lafaminute Wed 06-Feb-13 20:08:33

Because of the catholic churches huge influence over a state. It is the fundamental wrongness of the application of the catholicism that is at the root of these cases and the idea that every person must be capable of evil in order to carry out these attrocities - that over all these years not one intelligent and articulate person did not come across these heinous institutions and choose NOT to tow the line and speak out - THAT is the crime; that families allowed their children to be taken into these prisons, didn't question them or value their children over the power of the church/state. Unfortunately I think this issue is being overtaken by the demand for compensation. How can a life have monetary compensation????? I get that they have worked for nothing/have no pension accrued, but that is surely a separate issue over the acknowledgement of a state , a church and a people that wrong was done by everyone in allowing these institutions to exist without monitoring. Also, if the inmates are still alive, surely so are many of the perpetrators and where are they and surely some salve could be achieved by their apologies too????
I am catholic and have chosen to raise my children catholic - in a different world than that in which I was raised. This topic makes me ashamed of my irish ancestors and of my church's lack of humility and humanity.

LesBOFerables Wed 06-Feb-13 20:10:17

The campaign is called Justice For Magdalenes (JFM), but their website has crashed with the increased traffic, I think.

AmandaPayne Wed 06-Feb-13 21:25:54

1996. Fucking hell.

I was doing my A levels. These things have existed in basically my adult life time. I cannot get my head around that.

FrameyMcFrame Fri 08-Feb-13 08:12:11

Lafaminute, there are a lot still alive and many are only aged 50+

An apology in necessary but if it was me I would want financial compensation for being illegally imprisoned and treated as a slave.

I hope they get as much as possible so they can live the rest of their lives in comfort and support their families.

LesBo, I can't get on that website JFM either.

BOF Fri 08-Feb-13 08:22:44

I could open it yesterday. There are some good links on the thread in Chat too.

Animation Tue 12-Feb-13 12:01:20

Are these perpetrators being prosecuted?

An apology isn't usually enough with other serious crimes.

Feels like they have got away with it,

ItsintheBag Tue 12-Feb-13 18:56:38

There is an excellent film that gives you an insight into what these women suffered.One being in there for basically being pretty and leading men to temptation.I felt sick after watching it.

movies.netflix.com/WiMovie/The_Magdalene_Sisters/60029191?locale=en-US

FrameyMcFrame Tue 12-Feb-13 22:02:48

I'll watch that, we've got netflix. Thanks.

BreadForMyBREADGUN Sat 16-Feb-13 22:38:35

I've just seen this on the BBC - www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-21484252

Absolutely incredible and unbelievable that this was going on so bloody recently, and it's so little known!

Darkesteyes Sat 16-Feb-13 23:14:34

The Magdelene Sisters is being shown on BBC1 on Thursday at 11.35pm.

BreadForMyBREADGUN Sat 16-Feb-13 23:24:48

Thank you, i'll look out for it

GardenPath Sun 17-Feb-13 05:16:06

I've an idea at some point in the future, should anyone care to do any probing, we're going to discover this was not just the Magdelene's. This has got me thinking about something a friend of mine once mentioned to me when I was much younger, I guess this must have been about 30 years ago now. We were no older than twenty and he was working part time in a local 'home' for the mentally challenged, I dare say they called it a mental asylum then, or, less pc, 'the looney bin'. He told me, just in passing, about an old lady inmate he used to chat to, of about seventy-ish, who'd spent almost her entire life there and had been incarcerated at fifteen years old for having an 'illegitimate' baby. In other words, she'd been given what amounted to a life sentence, (or several if you count 15 years as the average LS for murder) at fifteen, for having a baby out of wedlock. Apparently, she wasn't there for being a 'loony'. He didn't say the inmates were necessarily badly treated or abused, at least for the time he worked there, but this was not a Catholic home or institution, this was a state run home in the UK, somewhere in Buckinghamshire if I remember correctly.
Of course, she must have been born around 1910, which now almost seems like pre-history, and the thinking was different then, though not much it can sometimes seem. We all know of the shame and calumny young women (never the fathers) had to bear for such things in those days. And I remember being horrified and outraged on her behalf, though my young friend treated my reaction with some bemusement; well, she wasn’t the only one, he said. I expect she had become so institutionalised she couldn’t have coped in the outside world anyway. Perhaps she was even happy there, by that time, with company and some sort of security and order. Outside she’d possibly have been left, alone and friendless, as are many of our seniors, to our shame.
But I do hope that perhaps this appalling Magdalene story, being current in the news, though by no means unknown about or new, might bring to light many more instances of the injustice meted out to women, incarcerated simply because it was expedient or for ‘crimes’ against society, for which they were never tried or convicted. What is most appalling about the Magdalene Laundries is that we’re not talking Dickens here – this was still going on, and being allowed to go on, so recently; under our noses.
I’d better stop here, this was only meant to be a quick post, and I feel a rant about a load of other social injustices coming on.

amothersplaceisinthewrong Sun 17-Feb-13 06:16:29

How do the nuns who ran these laundries reconcile their Christian principles of love, forgiveness, not judging with what went on inside them....

Mind you from what my Mother said about her convent education, the nuns were anyting but Christian - they were nasty, judgemental cows who appeared to take pleasure in inflicting misery on those in their care...

munchkinmaster Sun 17-Feb-13 06:56:23

gardenpath in the late 90s one of my friends volunteered at a local mental health hospital and told me there were several patients who had been admitted for similar reasons on the 50s but were now completely institutionalised and stuck there.

msrisotto Sun 17-Feb-13 18:12:16

It's disgusting and the nuns running the places and all the other people who let this happen need to be arrested.

Ohhelpohnoitsa Sun 17-Feb-13 18:18:52

I saw the film last year and was so moved / shocked / horrifiex by it that I felt obliged to buy the book. I read it in a day and cried and felt disgusted and outraged - so much so that I made about 6 other people read it. They all had the same reaction.

FrameyMcFrame Tue 19-Feb-13 08:51:16

Gardenpath, I've also heard about women such as the ones you mention in a residential mental hospital in Northumberland. Why do these horrendous injustices just get swept under the carpet? Because they are women? If it was an ethnic minority or in fact any other sector of society there would be public outrage!!!! sad sad sad
I would also like to read the book, will order today.

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