Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman has said he is “engaging” with the Taoiseach about the possibility of a State apology in the Dáil over illegal birth registrations.
The Minister told RTÉ radio’s Today with Claire Byrne show that he had made an apology on behalf of the Government in the Seanad on Tuesday as the Birth Information and Tracing Bill was going through the House.
Mr O’Gorman acknowledged that the late notice to people affected by the Bill was an issue. “I take the point about the short notice. It should have been longer.”
The Minister said that he was committed to speaking to the Taoiseach on the issue to ensure that the people involved felt there had been “full parity of esteem” in the State’s response to them.
It comes after the Government-appointed Special Rapporteur on Child Protection called for the Taoiseach to offer an apology in the Dáil to people affected by illegal birth registrations.
Co-founder of the Adoption Rights Alliance Susan Lohan meanwhile said the apology on Tuesday by the Minister for Children “missed the mark” for a number of reasons.
Illegal birth registrations occur where a birth certificate is falsified to register a child as having been born to their adoptive parents.
The practice has been a criminal offence since 1874, but a series of reports said the State was aware of the practice for decades before any serious action was taken.