Minister must commence process for unearthing abuse in Irish sport

08 July 2024

Labour’s Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has expressed his shock at the revelations of the RTÉ and Sunday Independent investigation into abuses within the FAI.

Deputy Ó Ríordáin has called on Ministers Martin and Byrne to open a process to unearth any past abuses across all Irish sports.

Deputy Ó Ríordáin said:

“The reporting carried out by RTÉ and the Sunday Independent has highlighted simply harrowing accounts of abuse that the FAI has allowed to take place. I want to credit the women who spoke on last night’s show, and who have been brave enough to lend their voice to other survivors of abuse.

“It’s time for action and for the voices of these women to be heard. To that end, I am urging Minister Catherine Martin and her colleague Minister Thomas Byrne to commence a process to unearth any and all abuses of the past in sports in Ireland.

“Such a process could be led by Sport Ireland and chaired independently.

“Historically, safeguarding practices have been few and far between in Irish sport. Football is the latest sport to have a light shone on its dark past, and we are all aware of serious issues within other codes like swimming before.

“There are serious questions to be answered from the FAI about how players have been treated in the past, and what safeguards are in place for the future.

“Unfortunately Ireland is no stranger to the horrific abuses of power from people of all ages in many different settings. Let’s work immediately to ensure that sport in Ireland is safe for everyone.”

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