WE WERE CHILDREN
Ryan Report Artane Abuse Summary
7.549 Commission to Inquire into Child Abuse Findings:
- Sexual abuse by Brothers was a chronic problem in Artane.
- Brothers who served in Artane included firstly those who had previously been guilty of sexual abuse of boys, secondly those whose abuse was discovered while they worked in Artane and, thirdly some who were subsequently revealed to have abused boys.
- During one year in the 1940s there were seven such Brothers (child rapists) in Artane at the same time.
- More abuse occurred than is recorded in documents because of inadequate recording and reporting procedures. In particular:
- Because boys could be punished for complaining about abuse, there was inevitably under-reporting.
- One offender, Br Dennis, admitted sexually abusing many boys in Artane, but only one of his victims gave evidence at the Phase II oral hearings.
- Other causes of under-reporting also operated, including the fact that sexual abuse is difficult for victims to corroborate or verify, the fear of being disbelieved, lack of faith in the investigation process, and feelings of shame and embarrassment.
- Cases and allegations of sexual abuse were not properly investigated; information was not shared in the Congregation; cases were not reported to the Department; and the Gardaí were not informed.
- The Congregation was aware of the criminal nature of sexual abuse perpetrated by Brothers.
- The Congregation was also aware of the risk of recidivism in such cases
- The Christian Brothers have submitted that repeat offenders were dismissed from the Congregation, but this does not appear to have occurred. The Brother could continue teaching in a lay capacity.
- Some Brothers and former Brothers found to have committed sexual abuse were able to continue damaging children for many years because of the policy of concealment of the disclosure of abuse, failure to investigate properly and failure to report.
- All brothers identities listed in the report were protected with pseudonymns
Gross Exploitation & Slave Labour
7.628 Artane Finance:
- Artane was an important source of support and income to the Congregation.
- Lack of funds was not a reason for failure to provide for the children in Artane.
- Artane was a major contributor to the Building Fund and to the support of the Provincial Organisation.
- The Artane Community charged a full stipend for Brothers who had little or no involvement in the care of the boys and funded the Community’s day-to-day expenses out of the maintenance grant for the children, which enabled the House to run at a profit.