Irish prime minister Enda Kenny has met women who worked in the Magdalene Laundries.
The institutions housed unmarried mothers or women guilty of pretty crime and used them as unpaid workers.
Mr Kenny is expected to issue a full apology next week for the treatment they endured in the institutions, which were run by Catholic nuns.
An estimated 10,000 women and girls were made to work in the laundries between 1922 - 1996.
Earlier this month a report found the Irish government was involved in running the laundries.
The last laundry closed in 1996.
Mr Kenny has offered an expression of regret for the stigma attached to former inmates.