We can look back in pride as well as anger. With pride we regard the contribution we have made and continue to make to our society…
Dr Austin O'Carroll, GP and member of the Irish
Thalidomide Association committee
Among our tiny group we include doctors, an engineer, a journalist, as well as farmer, publican, an artist, and community development leaders. We regard our children and partners, our place in our communities, with pride and with pleasure….
John Stack, Farmer and Chair of the Irish Thalidomide Association
And in anger, we also calculate the costs. Our lives, which we consider ordinary, which is a success in itself, has come at a price. We have pushed ourselves far. We have strained our muscles, twisted our skeletons, and inherited pain. The arrangement made between the Irish Government and our parents in 1975 was then barely adequate and is today wholly inadequate needs to be re-visited urgently in the light of our declining status.
A recent survey of our members, due to be published in a Medical Journal, enumerate these difficulties. Previous surveys carried out by the UK and Swedish Thalidomide groups, endorse our call for review and redress.
The deterioration of health and mobility, due to deformities caused by Thalidomide, in our members is evident. This deterioration will continue and increase as we the survivors grow older. Precedence has been set both in Sweden and the UK where redress has been granted to the survivors.
Some members here rightly deserve to have their cases re-investigated as they have not been officially recognized as Thalidomide survivors and accordingly never received any benefits from the 1975 "arrangement".