‘More Disturbing Revelations From Waterford’

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This morning.

It’s being reported that a report by the Government’s Special Rapporteur on Child Protection Dr Geoffrey Shannon (above) on Ireland’s child protection system – looking at 5,400 cases, from 2008 to 2015, where gardaí removed children from their parents under Section 12 of the Child Care Act – is to be published.

It will be published by Assistant Garda Commissioner John O’Driscoll.

Section 12 of the act allows gardai to remove a child if they believe there is a serious risk to the child’s health or welfare.

It’s being reported that both Tusla and the gardaí are criticised in the report.

Further to this.

Aoife Hegarty, of RTÉ Investigates, spoke to Audrey Carville on Morning Ireland earlier, ahead of her own report on the matter this evening.

Ms Hegarty said, in addition to a report on Mr Shannon’s examination, she’ll be looking at “disturbing revelations” concerning a boy in the south east of Ireland.

Ms Hegarty said:

“We’ve been following a number of child protection cases. They include a case that’s currently before the courts in which our child protection services again come under the spotlight. In terms of the actions that the Child Family Agency Tusla has, or indeed hasn’t, taken in terms of vulnerable children.

We also examine another case which we came across again a child was left in a foster placement, despite allegations of sexual abuse and we’ll show various documentation from that case which we’ve seen and lastly, we’ll feature new revelations on the quality of care provided by child protection services in the south east.

“I suppose by now we’re all well familiar with the very sad story of Grace, that young woman with profound intellectual disabilities who was left in a foster home in the south east for 20 years, despite serious allegations, a woman who was recently awarded over €6million in the High Court.

But tonight, we reveal yet more disturbing revelations from the Waterford area. This time in relation to the care provided to a young boy. In all, the programme raises very serious questions for our child protection authorities and whether, in all cases, they’re functioning adequately.

RTÉ Investigates is on RTÉ One at 10.35pm this evening.

Call for cultural change in child protection system (RTE)

8 thoughts on “‘More Disturbing Revelations From Waterford’

  1. Jimmy Ireland

    It’s a broken system. It simply doesn’t work in its current form. The Gardaí are not adequatly trained, resourced or equipped to care for an abused/abusive/disabled child yet being the catch-all service they are they often times find themselves doing exactly that.

    The very fact the Tusla service often used is called Out-of-Hours speaks volumes about the priorities for the child and family agency. The hours for a child in a dangerous situation is 24/7 yet the agency tasked with managing their welfare in a crisis considers Mon-Fri, 9-5 as their hours. The vast majority of cases happen outside these hours when kids are at home, not at school and so the Gardaí are waiting hours at night for social workers to come and assess the situation and then options are automatically limited due to the unsocial hours these cases tend to happen in. Weekends in particular when drink and drugs are a factor. The fact that Gardaí operate 24/7 means they are used as a safety net for everything, suitable or not, when in fact Tusla, like other emergency services should also operate in full capacity 24/7.

    1. Jackdaw

      Every major Garda Station in the country gets a communication from a “really concerned ” social Worker about some issue at 4.55 on a Friday without fail. Over to you boys I’m off to the pub.

      1. Jake38

        Spot on. The Friday afternoon dump from the 9 to 5 social work service (closed 12.30 to 2.00 for lunch)

        1. Karen

          Having worked with many social workers, have never seen any of them take a lunch break (work through it eating in their car, at desk, in court), certainly don’t take an hour and a half break – that is an outrageously laughable statement.

      2. Karen

        Are you leaving this exact same comment everywhere online. Exact same one on the journal or did you just copy and paste another commenter? Duty social work teams have a duty phone and each social worker is required to take it at night to be on call 24/7 on a rotational basis.

  2. Jake38

    As usual we are completely ignoring the elephant in the room. Children who are removed from chaotic and abusive homes exist in this fostering system because there is no way for them to be adopted.

  3. Jake38

    Children continue to exist in this dysfunctional system because we have no mechanism for them to be adopted. The elephant in the room.

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