Roscommon Abuse Report

Last week, the report was published on a case in which the Western Health Board failed to protect six children from their drunken, sexually-abusive parents.

Both abusers are now in jail, but not before six children were permanently damaged through the actions of the criminals and the failure of the Health Board employees to protect them.

A right-wing Catholic organisation intervened by sponsoring a High Court action which had the effect of prolonging the children’s agony for two more years while the social workers, who didn’t seem to understand the judgement, vacillated and dithered.

Some of the people involved in this Catholic organisation appear to have intimidated Health Board officials, which indicates that they might be influential in the local area.

I recommend a careful reading of the report, which is unfortunately written in very insipid touchy-feely-speak, but which is nevertheless unable to escape the bleak truth.  Six children were raped, starved and left to live in filth by two depraved drunks, while the social workers stood by with their heads up their arses.


Because the social workers were boys and girls fresh out of college, with no experience of life and a head full of half-witted sociology jargon.

While the social workers were recommending a bigger house for this family, the father and mother were both agreeing with everything they advised and simultaneously sexually abusing their children.  These little social-working boys and girlies thought a bigger house would solve the problem, when we all know people who came from huge families,  who grew up in tiny little cottages, and who experienced none of the depravity inflicted by these two savages.

The social workers were afraid.  They were afraid of the mad Catholic ideologues defending their insane vision of the family.  They were afraid of local power groups threatening their jobs.  They might even have been afraid of their own bosses.  And they were intoxicated by the feelings of infallibility conferred through the fake-scientific jargon of their fake-scientific training.

I’d like to know the following.

Which particular Catholic group took the action reported on?

Which senior officers of the Western Health Board were affiliated with this right-wing Catholic group, represented by the demented Mena Cribben?

Mena Cribben aka Mína Bean Uí Chribín

What law firm represented this vicious bunch of life-hating maniacs?

What connection does this firm have with extreme right-wing Catholicism?

Why did the Health Board not attend the High Court hearing funded by this extreme group?

Who in the Health Board decided after receiving the High Court ruling, not to pursue the matter and save these children from abuse?

Why did two GPs flatly contradict each other, with one saying the children were neglected and the other saying they were well looked after?

Apart from all that, the Health Board failed the children in countless other ways.

Here are some random quotes from the report:

  • 1989  A concerned neighbour contacted the Public Health Nurse (PHN1) expressing concern about the extent of the parents’ alcohol consumption; and alcohol being given to the baby. PHN 1 visited and found the baby pale and irritable.
  • In 1990, further to a telephone call from Mr A, PHN 1 attended at the home as Mrs A had just given birth there. The nurse called the family GP who arranged a hospital admission. She advised the Inquiry Team that Mrs A explained to her some days later that she had drunk eleven vodkas the evening before the birth and had not realised that she was in labour. The PHN advised the Inquiry that she told Mrs. A that it was a lot of drink.
  • The speech and language record for June 1999 shows that one of the older children, who was not taken to appointments in previous years, was referred again to the service. This child is described as not having walked until two years old and was having nightmares every night by the age of six.

There is something deeply sinister going on here.  Something beyond mere neglect and beyond incompetence.  These criminals were protected by ideologues and we need to know how far up in the Health Board their influence extended.


Report HERE


Mena Cribben

8 replies on “Roscommon Abuse Report”

I can’t really add anything to what you’ve said, Bock.

I’m responding to your post only to register my solidarity with the outraged or something like that.

As Leonard Cohen put it, everybody knows and this report is like many of the other reports we’ve had over many years now that merely confirm what everybody knows.

As indicated in the questions you’ve posed, this is another report that probably raises at least as many questions as it answers. And the unanswered questions are probably more important than those answered.

In this regard I note that the terms of reference of the report were defined by the HSE. Need one say any more?

This report is a chink of light into one of the countless oubliettes to which the victims of this dysfunctional society are condemned.

I doubt if your questions will be answered and no doubt this report will be consigned to another kind of oubliette where countless other such reports repose in dusty oblivion.

I wonder how those kids are doing now?
Wouldn’t it be better both financially and of course morally to help these poor misfortunes early on?
How much is the cost to society in the long run if kids facing this kind of abuse are not helped?
As a social worker, how can you turn a blind eye to this level of abuse? How can you sleep at night, without fighting tooth and nail to save these kids lives? (regardless of any intimidation)
Why does a Catholic organisation have any clout in our legal system?

I wonder of the type of parent willing to rape their own child might be also willing to “share” that child with other similarly depraved scumbags, as happens in some peadophile networks, and who those other people might be.


It’s a very good question about the state of mind of the social workers. We don’t have a culture of whistleblowing (or rather it’s very rare) and those people would have suffered severe discrimination at work and intimidation for going against an informal but extremely influential power structure. Nevertheless they should have acted differently, and by not doing so severely damaged several defenseless children, some of whom may go on to perpetuate a cycle of abuse and delinquency.

I don’t why, but this case has sickened more me than all the others, perhaps because it is so contemporary. Things never seem to improve and it makes me extremely anxious for the welfare of my own children, should anything happen to their parents in this country.

If you really want to vomit your breakfast, think about this case and then read Monsignor Water’s implicit defense of abusive families against the ‘nanny-state’ intervention in suspected child abuse. He speaks for a lot of people.


I think you are right in that managerial pseudo-scientific language and ‘systems’ are used to justify lack of basic nous and courage. Historically, many forms of oppression and abuse have their own mantras to protect the perpetrators from the effects of their actions.

Epopt – “Historically, many forms of oppression and abuse have their own mantras to protect the perpetrators from the effects of their actions.”

Following orders and doing ones duty spring to mind.

also, John Waters had a very sinister article on the case in the Mail last Sunday where he declared that the right wing nutwings were part of the ‘support package’ provided by the heath service, and that they were in fact working with the health service. they bought the father a car, and the house was cleaned up and decorated by them, in anticipation of a social work visit that never came.

according to waters, ‘people’ failed the roscommon children. not the state, not the hse, not the parents, but ‘people’ whoever the fuck they are.

On the other hand, there is the joke I recently heard that goes:

What’s the difference between a social worker and a Rottweiler?

It’s easier to get your child back from a Rottweiler.

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