Attorney General to Give Opinion on Release of “Brandon” Report

The government is seeking advice from the Attorney General on whether he can release the full “Brandon” report into the protracted sexual abuse of mentally disabled residents in County Donegal.

The HSE published the summary of the report, supplemented by the National Independent Review Panel (NIRP).

The report found that a former resident of a disabled center run by the HSE committed more than 100 sexual assaults on 18 adults with intellectual disabilities between 2003 and 2016.

The resident, using the pseudonym Brandon, committed the sexual assaults with the “full knowledge” of management and staff.

Sinn Fein’s Padraig Mac Lochlainn called for full publication of the report.

Donegal TD said it was a “long and painful road” for the families of those who suffered horrific abuse.

“They were hoping this report would finally give them the answers they had been waiting for for years,” Mac Lochlainn told Dail.

“We now know that there have been over 100 cases of inappropriate sexual behavior committed by a resident.

“It was the most horrible of situations. These victims were the most vulnerable in our society.

“They were non-verbal and placed all of their trust in the center and the HSE to protect them. This obviously did not happen.

Families and the Irish public need to know all the facts. Why keep dragging this?

“These victims failed.

“But even after all of this, even after all the public cries for the report to be released, the full report still hasn’t been released.

“The summary, while detailed, is still not the full report.

“Irish families and the public need to know all the facts. Why keep dragging this?

Tanaiste Leo Varadkar said he was “horrified” by what was contained in the report.

He told Dail that Anne Rabbitte, Minister of State for Disability, met with the HSE on Tuesday to discuss the report’s publication.

“Regarding the full report, Minister Rabbitte is seeking advice from the Attorney General (Paul Gallagher) on whether she can publish it in its entirety or in a redacted form,” Varadkar added.

“The HSE says at this time that this is not possible, but Minister Rabbitte does not accept this at this time and seeks advice from the lawyer on whether she can publish it in its entirety or if not in its entirety, at least in written form. “

Tanaiste Leo Varadkar said the government was seeking advice on whether it could release the full ‘Brandon’ report (Brian Lawless / PA)

Mr. Varadkar added: “I am very aware that in discussing this issue there are families who have been deeply affected and who are in deep pain.

“I think for anyone who has read or listened to the reports on the matter, they are going to be shocked and upset by what happened.

“Certainly when I read about it at first I was horrified that this could have happened and even felt disbelief that something like this could and continue to happen for some time.

“Our thoughts are first and foremost with the individuals and families affected. I can’t begin to imagine what they went through this morning and indeed over the years.

He said it is important that lessons are learned and changes are made and that the report’s recommendations are fully implemented.

“The HSE assured the Minister that there were no users of ongoing risk services and that the national governance and accountability structures overseeing the implementation recommendations arising from the report were now in place,” Mr. Varadkar added.

Jacob L. Thornton