‘It was inevitable last weekend the Citizens’ Assembly put it up to the Oireachtas, recommending it finally set a date for a referendum to repeal the Eighth Amendment.’ Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

The Repeal campaign should be challenging political and economic inequalities

 Finian McGrath, Minister of State for Disability Issues, has appointed  senior counsel Marjorie Farrelly to lead a commission of investigation into Grace’s case. Photograph: Eric Luke

High Court award of €6.3m just part of huge cost to both ‘Grace’ and the taxpayer

“The reality of HAP is that it is an insecure and private contractual arrangement that can be pulled from under the tenant’s feet at the mercy of their landlord.” Photograph: Getty Images

Housing support payment ‘not a long-term guarantee of a secure home’ - Focus manager

Amanda Barnes (23), with Luca and Millie. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Amanda Barnes (23) and her three children face homelessness despite using the scheme

The HSE failed to provide a life-saving termination to a young, suicidal asylum seeker and held her against her will,  court documents state.  Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire.

Woman known as Ms Y had been raped in her own country and was suicidal

Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

New figures shows 2,137 children in emergency accommodation in Dublin

The “spring” rough-sleeper count, conducted on April 4th, found 138 people spending the night on the capital’s streets. File photograph: Frank Miller/The Irish Times

Campaigners call for ‘stronger interventions’ with more than 5,300 homeless in capital

Karen Keely with her partner Kevin and her three adult sons Lee, Lorcan and Harry, who have birth defects after she was prescribed Epilim throughout her pregnancies. Photograph: Alan Betson

Mother recalls shock at learning anti-epilepsy medication led to children’s ilnesses

Marine Martin, founder and spokeswoman of the French association of parents of children suffering from anti-convulsant syndrome (APESAC). Her book “Depakine, The Scandal (I Could Not Keep Silent)” is published this month. Photograph: Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty Images

FACS Forum says 400 children may have been born with foetal valproate syndrome

Róisín Ingle (right) and her mother Ann Ingle are pictured ahead of an event hosted by the Repeal the Eighth campaign on Sunday night.

Woman recalls procedure in 1960s London, saying it is important to share stories

Brendan Howlin: “It is certainly not acceptable for any doubt to even exist for bishops now or into the future to say that they have any influence”

Proposed hospital has to be free of any specific religious ethos, says Micheál Martin

The strategy says ageing heroin users are an emerging cohort with particular health needs, including “dental deterioration and special health needs caused by long-term drug use” . Photograph: Getty Images

Growing calls in recent years for the decriminalisation of drugs for personal use

Robust questioning: Members of Dáil Public Accounts committee, Alan Farrell,  Catherine Connolly and David Cullinane. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Mary Higgins tells Dáil committee she regrets way her ‘comments were presented’

You’re already feeling horrible in yourself if you’re an addict. Looking down on us isn’t helping, says former user Philip Weldon from Dolphins Barn. Photograph: Alan Betson

Organisation aims to advocate for improved services and more rapid access to treatment

The National Safeguarding Committee is publishing poll findings that reveal that one in two adults has experienced abuse of a vulnerable adult

Newly established National Safeguarding Committee says problem is ‘very widespread’

Anti-water charges protesters in Dublin. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Demonstrators gather for ‘final push’ against the levies as political deadlock continues

Minister for Health Simon Harris has said he wants to see ‘every action and recommendation’ in the Jeyes report ‘acted on with great urgency’. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Sunbeam House Services accused of abuse and neglect by clients’ relatives

Annmarie O’Brien (top left), her daughter Paris (left), with Holly O’Brien and Jordan O’Brien, who all died, and their mother Bridget O’Brien (top right), who remains critically ill following the fire at Kilcronan estate in Clondalkin, Dublin.

Bridget ‘Biddy’ O’Brien in critical but stable condition after blaze in Dublin apartment

There are 1,985 open cases of historic abuse, the highest number (345) in Cork.

Retrospective sex allegations generally made by adults but perpetrators may still be active

The most frequently raised disincentive for people on a disability payment to taking up a job was fear of losing the medical card

Minister promises that earnings threshold for those with medical cards will be raised

An unannounced Hiqa inspection of Highwater Lodge in Co Wexford, a centre for adults with disabilities,   found punishments included food restrictions, confiscation of personal belongings and fines. File photograph: Getty Images

Inspection of Highwater Lodge in Wexford finds punishments such as food limits, fines

A child at the Calais Jungle: so far 25 unaccompanied minors from the  camp in Calais have come here since the Government committed, in November, to take 200  young people. File photograph: PA

Teenage boys from Syria, Sudan and Eritrea among unaccompanied minors settling here

Cyril Walker from Armagh is greeted at Dublin airport on return from the Special Olympics in Austria. Photograph: Eric Luke / The Irish Times.

26-strong Team Ireland arrive triumphant into Dublin airport

Mila Kunis and husband Ashton Kutcher: the name Mila is racing up the popularity ladder. Photograph: Sean M Haffey/Getty Images

July is the most popular month for having babies in Ireland and February the least

The number of homeless children in the State increased last month to 2,546. File photograph: Aidan Crawley

New figures show progress made in tackling the homelessness crisis has been reversed

There is a serious lack of understanding about concealed pregnancies and the difficulties involved, said the report’s author Sylvia Murphy Tighe. Photograph posed by model: iStock

Women who hide their pregnancies are often judged harshly and insensitively, says author

“Grace”, who is severely intellectually disabled and unable to speak, was left in a foster home in the southeast for 13 years after a decision to remove her in April 1996 was overturned in October 1996. File photograph: Getty Images

South Eastern Health Board staff involved in 1996 decision to leave girl in foster home

Caranua is an independent body established under the the 2012 Residential Institutions Statutory Fund Act. Photograph: Getty Images

Statutory body’s chief spurns criticism, that ‘majority’ of applicants happy with scheme

David Dineen: In 2002, his childhood abuse was recognised at the Residential Institutions Redress Board. Photograph: Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision

David Dineen decided to speak out ‘for other victims of Caranua who do not have a voice’

The ESRI report finds people with disabilities are four times less likely to enter the workforce than people without a disability, and more likely to leave it

ESRI report says adults with disabilities are older and more likely to live alone

 Mourners at the funeral of victims of the fire in Clondalkin at St Anne’s Church, Shankill. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Four people, including pregnant woman and three children, died in Dublin blaze

School principals in Swords agree there is a “serious issue” with a shortage of junior infant places. Some said it was a “foreseeable problem” the department should have prepared for

Over 100 children in River Valley have no school to go to in September

Mourners at the prayer service in Bray for Annmarie, Paris, AJ, Holly and Jordan O’Brien, who died in the Clondalkin fire. Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

‘The families are just supporting each other. You can’t believe [this tragedy] is real’

 The aftermath of the Stardust fire in Dublin on February 14th, 1981. Photograph: Tom Lawlor

Relatives of those killed in 1981 fire say they cannot co-operate with new investigation

Annmarie O’Brien, her daughter Paris, and her cousin’s  daughters Holly  and  Jordan O’Brien who died in a fire at Kilcronan estate in Clondalkin, Dublin.

Prayers to be said in Bray on Sunday for Annmarie, Paris, Holly and Jordan O’Brien

Fiona Ryan of Sonas: “We are a charity which operates facilities very much under the radar, in a very low-key, anonymous way. So, of course we are going to have to look at this.” Photograph: Colin Keegan, Collins Dublin

Families’ privacy may be compromised at housing facility for women and children

Fiona Ryan  of the Sonas domestic violence charity at the scene of the fire: “We are scrupulous about protecting our clients’ privacy, in life and in death.” Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Bray Travellers group says ‘inseparable’ cousins had grown up in same house

Were individuals at fault in this saga, or was there systemic bad governance?

Broad investigation into abuse allegations required to deliver lessons we need to learn

The World Conference on Women's Health at the RDS was told women’s and children’s rights were more vulnerable in patriarchal societies

Reproductive rights of women must be protected, UN health expert tells Dublin congress

The site of a mass grave for children who died in the Tuam mother and baby home, Galway, before excavations began. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA Wire

Move comes after discovery of the remains of a ‘significant’ number of babies in Tuam

Adam Harris, founder of asiam.ie, demonstrating a visual overload experience with Garda Inspector Ken McLaughlin, watched by other gardaí, during an autism awareness seminar in Clondalkin Garda Station. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Part of diversity training which also includes LGBT and mental health awareness

The entrance of the Magdalene laundry on Stanhope Street in Dublin’s north inner city. File photograph: Cyril Byrne

Warning that terms of reference may not address ‘the whole spectrum of abuses’

Travellers celebrate outside the Dáil after Taoiseach Enda Kenny formally recognised Travellers as a distinct ethnic group on Wednesday night. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Taoiseach Enda Kenny has formally recognised Travellers as a distinct ethnic group

 A Travellers’  rights protest  on their way to the Dáil. Enda Kenny’s symbolic statement will not confer any   additional new rights on Travellers. Photograph: Alan Betson

Overturning of official policy which saw Travellers as a ‘problem’ highly significant

 Nicole Joyce (13)  from Kells and Hannah McGinley and her daughter Ciosa McGinley from Galway  at Buswells Hotel watching the Dáil debate on recognition of Traveller ethnicity. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Taoiseach applauded as about 100 Travellers stand outside Dáil due to lack of personnel

 “Wouldn’t it be great if the history of the Traveller people, and our culture,  was taught in the schools?” James Reilly at the Traveller site in Clonshaugh, Co Dublin. Photograph: Eric Luke

Travellers and human rights groups welcome Taoiseach’s statement

A file photograph of members of the Traveller Community at Brittas Bay in  Co Wicklow. Photograph: Eric Luke/The Irish Times.

Campaigners believe move will give community confidence to address challenges it faces

Taoiseach Enda Kenny will make a statement in the Dáil at 6.45pm on Wednesday recognising the unique ethnic identity of the Irish Travelling community. File photograph: David Sleator/The Irish Times

Taoiseach to make statement recognising unique identity of Travelling community

Fred McBride: The chief executive of Tusla convened a group to “support”  implementation of  the  controversial policy in November 2014. Photograph: Eric Luke

Social workers said informing alleged abusers of allegations tipped balance from victims

Mike O’Donoghue (11), Taylor (6 months) Cyote (7), Shakira (5) and Katie (8) live in a caravan on the Limerick/Ennis road at Dromoland with neither running water nor toilets. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Nearly 40 children living by roadside in Clare as €237,000 housing fund remains unspent

Tesco workers picketing outside Tesco Metro in Drumcondra, Dublin, on Friday. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Department of Social Protection says weekly tax-free payment not suspended

Stray horses are rounded up in Southill in Limerick. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Group wants funding for facilities to keep horses and educate disadvantaged locals

A protest   outside the Department   of Justice  organised in conjunction with the Irish Refugee Council to mark the 15th anniversary of  direct provision. File photograph: Dave Meehan

Those applying for refugee status must now fill in ‘complicated’ 60-page application form

Several hospitals have said that patients frequently become homeless while in hospital

Children’s hospitals note rise in destitution and increased workload for social workers

Vanessa Lacey, health and education officer with Transgender Equality Network Ireland, said sex-change procedure was not one undertaken lightly. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimon

Six Irish residents underwent ‘sex-change’ surgery abroad, with 22 others transitioning

 People Before Profit  candidate Eamonn McCann,    with  daughter Kitty Holland, in the Foyle constituency. Photograph:  Trevor McBride

Kitty Holland goes canvassing with the People Before Profit candidate in Derry

A Department of Justice executive committed to a review of legislation criminalising the purchase of sex to assess its impact on the  rights of sex workers. Photograph: Getty Images

Institutional abuse and traveller ethnicity among issues raised by UN committee

A photograph by a former tenant of the house in Portobello in Dublin, in which up to 16 young women have been living in three bedrooms.

Young women sharing Dublin house told they have few rights as owner lives there too

People renting a room in someone’s home have almost no rights and are among the most vulnerable tenants in the State, housing experts have warned.  File photograph: Bryan O’Brien

Housing specialists call for more protections and legislation for Rent-a-Room tenants

The chief executive of Tusla said he has sent a written apology to the McCabes today. Photograph: Alan Betson / The Irish Times

Ministers strongly criticise Minister for Children for failing to disclose knowledge of case

Sinn Féin MEP for Dublin  Lynn Boylan: ‘We seem to have a particularly poor record in using EU funding compared to other member states.’

Ireland only spent half of its allocation from bloc’s integration fund between 2007-2015

 Ruth Coppinger TD: “There is not much evidence of rebuilding Ireland when less houses were built under this Minister than the last.” Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

AAA-PBP criticises promises made by Minister for Housing Simon Coveney as hollow

Grace Burke, Future Voices, Emily Logan, chief commissioner, Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission, and Jodie Clarke, Future Voices, at the launch of  a human rights    report in Dublin on Wednesday. Photograph:  Stuart McNamara

Report ahead of State’s appearance at UN committee calls for action on austerity

Frances Fitzgerald: ‘Irish society faces considerable risks if integration is not supported by Government, by communities and individuals.’ Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Expert says a national action plan against racism is needed to avoid issues developing

John McGuinness TD: his proposal comes amid growing concerns that large-scale repossessions by vulture funds will lead to the next wave of homelessness. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

John McGuinness urges setting-up of agency to protect troubled mortgage-holders

Resident “Danny” in the Respond facility: “The kids are sleeping better, loving having a routine.” Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Cost of Respond service at High Park Family Hub estimated to be 70% of a hotel room

Homeless woman Denise McCoy, who has had a stroke and is partially paralysed, is ‘terrified’ of being discharged from hospital. Photograph:  Dara Mac Dónaill

‘I could see people stoned, laughing,’ says Denise McCoy (52) who is paralysed on one side

Residents and volunteers painting a sign in Apollo House in Dublin in January. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Group aims to be a ‘permanent, citizens’ intervention in the homelessness crisis’

Sounding and looking weak, hunger striker Amjad Rosstami  attended for blood tests in the Mater hospital on Wednesday. Photograph: Frank Miller

As a Kurd Amjad Rosstami maintains his life would be endangered if he returned to Iran

 Minister for Justice  Frances Fitzgerald addressing the Irish Human Rights and Equality Commission conference in Dublin on Wednesday. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Minister criticises Greek decision to put unaccompanied children in cages

Kieran Mulvey, former chair of the Workplace Relations Commission, will next week submit his report about what needs to be done to regenerate Dublin’s northeast inner-city. Photograph: Eric Luke

Report on how to regenerate Dublin’s inner city to be submitted to Government next week

Sarah and Abby Farrell at the new equestrian centre in Neilstown in Dublin. Photograph: Dave Meehan

Council hopes Clondalkin centre will mark ‘fresh start’ in relations with horse owners

Sarah Kelleher, chair of the Lourdes Community Youth Service, outside  the former Rutland Street school. It appears a promise to refurbish the building is about to be reneged on. Photograph: Alan Betson

Community groups react angrily as council says renovation of school is not ‘cost effective’

U.S. President Barack Obama receives a bowl of shamrock from Taoiseach Enda Kenny  during a St Patrick’s Day reception at the White House in Washington. Photograph: Chris Kleponis/Reuters

John Halligan urges Taoiseach to withdraw from St Patrick’s Day meeting

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Katherine Zappone: “I am deeply concerned that discrimination may be happening at US immigration in Irish airports.” Photograph: Eric Luke

Application of Trump’s travel ban here may be illegal, warn human rights law experts

Demonstrators hold signs during anti-Donald Trump travel ban protests outside Hatfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport in Atlanta, Georgia. Photograph: Chris Aluka Berry/Reuters

Is the ban being implemented at Irish airports and are dual citizens affected?

US president Donald Trump signs a memorandum to security services directing them to defeat the Islamic State in the Oval Office at the White House in Washington on Saturday. The US embassy in Dublin has confirmed that it is implementing the ban on people from several countries entering the US at its immigration pre clearance facilities at Dublin and Shannon airports. Photograph: Reuters

US president has placed a 90-day ban on entry to the US by people from seven countries

Survivors of the Stardust disaster being rescued by firefighters in 1981. Photograph: Myles Byrne/Irish Press Group

Testimony of ageing witnesses to fire remains key as expert set to review evidence

Emergency workers at the site of the Stardust fire in Artane in Dublin on February 14th, 1981. A total of 48 people died in the fire and relatives  of some of those  who were killed believe there is new evidence related to the case.  Photograph: Tom Lawlor.

Relatives say previous report on blaze altered between submission and publication in 2008 to 2009

 Martin Collins from Pavee Point speaking at the launch of the Justice and Equality Committee report on Traveller ethnicity at the Dáil. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Statement in Dáil on ethnic status imminent according to members of Oireachtas committee

A file image from 1981 of firemen inspecting the aftermath of the Stardust fire.   Photograph: Tom Lawlor/The Irish Times

Families believe they have unearthed new evidence which ‘cannot be ignored’

A photograph of the Dublin nightclub taken on February 14th, 1981. Photograph: Tom Lawlor

Victims’ relatives are campaigning for a new inquiry into the 1981 Dublin nightclub fire

Brendan Ogle, co-founder of Home Sweet Home, at Apollo House: “Government policy on housing is a joke. But the people are going to change it. It’s going to happen the way we beat water.”  Photograph: Nick Bradshaw

Group to follow Right2Water example and mobilise citizens to ‘beat’ homelessness

The NWCI “urges the Government to remove “all existing legal, policy and cost barriers to adolescents’ and young women’s use of modern forms of contraception”. Photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

National Women’s Council submission says women hit harder by recession and austerity

A few schools may change a little with an easing of the Baptism barrier but the churches’ grip our children’s minds remains firm. Photograph: Getty Images

State continues to kowtow to church and our children are lambs in middle

Emmet Kirwan’s Heartbreak is the latest dazzling take on the state of our nation.

Emmet Kirwan’s visceral film exposes humbug of State claims to safeguard vulnerable

The Home Sweet Home group left Apollo House on Thursday 12th January in compliance with a High Court order. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill / The Irish Times

Ken Peterson offered €7.5m for vacant office building after reading homeless occupation

‘Some 12 per cent of Travellers live in caravans or mobile homes and 56 per cent ‘live in overcrowded accommodation’, the ESRI has found.’ Photograph: Chris Radburn/PA Wire

ESRI highlights the ‘urgency’ of the community’s situation in a landmark study

A man has been shot in the Ballymun area of Dublin.  File photograph: Cyril Byrne/The Irish Times

Victim in hospital after being wounded during incident in northside suburb on Monday

Full service has resumed on the Luas green line in Dublin after being party suspended following an earlier incident at the Harcourt stop. Photograph: Nick Bradshaw.

Incident at Harcourt stop saw operator Transdev stop trams between city centre and Beechwood

Gardaí are appealing for witnesses to a collision in which a pedestrian was killed. Photograph: Frank Miller

Woman in her 60s pronounced dead at scene after collision with car in Green Street, Callan

A waxwing in Lucan, Co Dublin last Friday: the birds feed on berries. Photograph: Eric Dempsey/Birds Ireland

Exotic birds seen in unusually high numbers along coast from Antrim to Wexford

Apollo House is over but Home Sweet Home says it will continue. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

‘Citizens’ intervention’ mobilised public anger and despair into something practical

Volunteers hug each other as homeless residents leave Apollo House on Thursday. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

HSH group had been occupying vacant building to accommodate homeless people

Protesters at Apollo House, Dublin, after a High Court ruling on the occupation. Photograph: Gareth Chaney/Collins

Home Sweet Home homelessness activists refuse to comply with eviction order

Occupiers of Apollo House unfurl a banner reading ‘Homes not hostels’ on Wednesday morning. Photograph: Dean Ruxton

Home Sweet Home campaigners say they will not vacate building as per court order

 Frank Donaghy, Pauline Deegan and Tanya Felloni: “The whole of Jobstown was there by the end,” Felloni says. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Trials of 18 people charged with false imprisonment of Joan Burton start in April

Apollo House on Poolbeg Street, Dublin: 18 people were still sleeping there on Tuesday night.  Photograph: Gareth Chaney Collins

Eighteen who remain say Dublin City Council failed to provide suitable accommodation

Volunteers in Apollo House where the homeless campaign group, Home Sweet Home, is continuing its occupation of the empty office block in Dublin’s Tara Street. Photograph: Niall Carson/PA

Concern ‘agreement entered into in good faith is now being reneged on’

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