Welcoming the high-level proposals for the National Centre for Research and Remembrance,
the government also noted the progress made in the first three months of the year in advancing key initiatives in the published Action Plan. In particular, there has been significant progress on the legislative programme to be delivered as part of the Action Plan. In January, Minister O’Gorman published the Birth Information and Tracing Bill 2022.
This landmark legislation, which provides guaranteed access in all cases to un-redacted birth certificates and identity information, is currently making its ways through the Houses of the Oireachtas, completing Committee Stage in the Dáil earlier this month. In February, Minister O’Gorman published the Institutional Burials Bill 2022
which aims to restore dignity to the children buried at Tuam. This Bill has just completed Second Stage in the Dáil and, like the Birth Information and Tracing Bill, is being progressed as a priority. This week the Minister will publish the Heads of the Mother and Baby Institutions Payment Scheme Bill
which will provide for financial payments and an enhanced medical card in acknowledgement of suffering experienced while resident in Mother and Baby and County Home Institutions. In terms of the estimated number of beneficiaries, the Mother and Baby Institutions Payment Scheme is the largest scheme of its type in the history of the State. An estimated 34,000 survivors will be eligible for the financial payment, with an estimated total Scheme cost of €800 million.