People & Power
Behind High Walls
People & Power on the abuse of Irish children in state care in the 20th century.
Last Modified: 21 Apr 2010 15:25 GMT

Rape, beatings and humiliation were the childhood experiences for many of the 170,000 boys and girls who were taken into care by the Irish state throughout the 20th century and placed in residential schools, run by the Catholic church.

This summer, after decades of denial, their memories were finally acknowledged in a set of reports which have made headlines all over the world.

These horrors were able to happen because of a mindset that was shared by the country's church, government, and even its general population. 

Last week the Irish government insisted it was not obstructing the publication of a report on an investigation into clerical child sex abuse in Dublin.

Victims groups fear that any delay in the report's release might mean key parts of the story will never see the light of day.

Irish journalist, Sinead O'Shea, reports for People & Power.

This espisode of People & Power was first broadcast on November 18.

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