Ancestry UK

The Northern Ireland Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry (HIAI)

In 2012, the Northern Ireland Assembly decided to follow the example of the Irish Republic and establish its own Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry (HIAI). The inquiry examined thirteen Catholic, secular, local authority and juvenile detention institutions in Northern Ireland covering the period from 1922 to 1995.

At an HIAI hearing on 12 February 2014, the inquiry heard that girls at the Londonderry Nazareth House had sometimes been punished by being bathed in disinfectant or forced to eat their own vomit. One girl had been made to clear a blocked toilet by removing the accumulated excrement with her bare hands.

On 14 January 2015, a statement from the Sisters of Nazareth accepted that children in their care had been abused. They offered their sincere and unreserved apology to all those whom they failed to protect. A similar apology was made by the De La Salle Brothers on 11 December 2014. At the session on 11 February 2015, the Sisters of Nazareth also expressed their 'sincere apologies and deep sadness at the pain and distress suffered by so many men and women as a result of the Child Migration Scheme'.