THE ‘Spirit of Mother Jones’ award has been presented to campaigner, Dunderrow woman Louise O’Keeffe.
The award was presented at the Mother Jones festival in Cork last week, named in honour of the Cork-born workers’ rights activist, Mary Harris Jones.
In the citation read out regarding Louise O’Keeffe, the audience were told how she had bravely fought a 15-year legal battle to establish that the Irish State’s failure to have a proper child protection framework in schools made it partly responsible for the abuse suffered.
‘She was often very alone in this fight, but she displayed a rare tenacity and total determination to fight and expose what had taken place to her and to many others,’ it read.
In spite of the Irish Courts’ curious failure to recognise this neglect and in spite of the Irish State threatening litigants for costs unless they dropped their cases, Louise fought bravely over the long years of her case along with her legal team and the European Court of Human Rights in January 2014 found in favour of her, it added.
She was given the award at a ceremony during the festival, by committee members Jim Nolan and Ann Piggott.