Boylan calls time on Dublin City Councils plan to sell Magdalene Laundry site to Japanese Hotel

Responding to the Dublin City Council Report on the proposed development of the Seán McDermott Street Magdalene Laundry site local Sinn Féin Councillor Janice Boylan has called on Council management to withdraw its plans to sell the site to a Japanese hotel chain.

Cllr Boylan said:

“We are deeply disappointed with the Report published by the Deputy Chief Executive of Dublin City Council. Over the last nine months we have raised numerous concerns regarding the proposed sale of the site. None of our concerns have been addressed in the report published this week.

“Central to any future development of the site must be an appropriate memorial to the women and girls of the Magdalene Laundries. This memorial is an outstanding commitment of Dublin City Council, Government and the Quirke Report.

“Management have ignored the historic significance of the site. The memorial must document the women and girls experiences within the Magdalene Laundries. It must also educate future generations on this shameful period in Ireland’s history.

“Management’s proposal does not include the provision of affordable housing. Its social housing proposition is minimal. There are no social clauses attached to the construction work. Despite the significant employment and training challenges within the community the report fails to provide any firm commitments to providing apprenticeships or employment opportunities.

“It’s time now for management to go back to the drawing board. This week’s report starkly demonstrates a worrying lack of ambition for the Seán McDermott Street site. Its potential has not been realised and claims by management that the proposed sale to Toyoko Inn is the only viable option for the site simply does not stand up to scrutiny. This lack of ambition for the north east inner city must be challenged by all members of the Council.

“Sinn Féin for our part is ambitious for the north east inner city. We strongly believe that the Seán McDermott Street site can and must accommodate social and affordable housing, innovative and sustainable commercial infrastructure and a memorial to the women and girls of the Magdalene Laundries that reflects the outcomes of the Dublin Honours Magdalenes memorialising event.

“Managements attempt to use the refurbishment of Rutland Street National School as a bargaining chip to get the Toyoko Inn sale over the line is unconscionable. They had confirmed with us some time ago that this work is not dependant on the sale of the Seán McDermott Street site. Our community and the city deserve better.” ENDS