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Children’s homes like Nazi camps

Derry Journal - online and in print on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday.

Derry Journal - online and in print on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday.

A former resident of a children’s home run by nuns in Derry has likened it to a Nazi concentration camp.

The man told the Historical Institutional Abuse Inquiry that the church-run St Joseph’s Boys’ Home at Termonbacca in Derry was a “hell hole”.

He told this morning’s hearings in Banbridge that he was in a “chain gang” polishing floors, was bathed in detergent as punishment and was sexually assaulted by a woman when he was aged five or six.

The Sisters of Nazareth oversaw both the St Joseph’s Home and the Nazareth House Children’s Home at nearby Bishop Street. The witness claimed: “It was kind of like a Zyklon B gas chamber.”

The alleged abuse happened in the 1950s and 60s.

The witness said he was later transferred to a home in Galway in the Irish Republic owned by the Christian Brothers.

“Essentially a Gulag, a child’s prison,” he claimed.

He added: “The comparison was two hell holes. Which is better? It is difficult to describe when things are bad, you are on a race to the bottom. Salthill (Galway) was Auschwitz, Termonbacca was Treblinka.”

See Friday’s ‘Derry Journal’ for more.

 
 
 

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