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Throughout the 20th century in Ireland, some 56,000 pregnant unmarried women were forced to give birth in ‘mother and baby homes’ run by the Catholic Church. Infants born into these institutions were either put up for adoption – sometimes without their mother’s consent – or fostered, or else raised on the premises in desolate conditions. And, as revealed by the Irish government’s recent inquiry into mother and baby homes abuses, these children also died inside with startling frequency, with a reported 15 per cent infant mortality rate at the 18 facilities investigated. Released in 2017, the powerful short documentary Mother and Baby by the Irish director Mia Mullarkey profiles some of the surviving children of the infamous Bon Secours Mother and Baby Home in Taum, County Galway, who are still grappling, decades later, with the wanton cruelty and trauma they endured – all with the complicity of the Irish state and the Catholic Church.
Director: Mia Mullarkey
Producer: Alice McDowell
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