Yes. They’re Serious

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Dr Conor O’Mahony, the Government’s special rapporteur on child protection, Katherine Zappone, Minister for Children and Youth Affairs

This morning

Further to revelations yesterday that people under investigation for child abuse, including sexual abuse, will be permitted to personally interview their alleged victims.

The guidelines, according to Dr Conor Mahony,  who was last year appointed by Minister for Children Katherine Zappone as the Government’s Special Rapporteur on Child Protection, are a product of the “imperfect legal environment” Tusla operates in.

Via The Irish Times:

Dr O’Mahony, a child law expert, said the policy to permit the cross-examination of a complainant is a “position driven by litigation and not by Tusla policy decisions”.

He added previous court rulings had made it clear Tusla had “significant discretion” in determining how an alleged victim might be cross-examined by the accused.

Social workers must “stress test” allegations when interviewing complainants, the guidelines state, including by asking if there may be an “alternative explanation” or “misinterpretation on their part” in relation to the allegations.

If direct questioning by the accused is judged inappropriate, other forms of “stress testing” should be considered, including allowing the suspect to write out questions to be put to the complainant, allowing their solicitor to question the complainant, or allowing the suspect to ask questions via videolink.

Call for legal reforms around Tusla child abuse investigations (irish Times)

Meanwhile

A petition calling for the immediate withdraw of these plans.

Sign here.

Yesterday: A Final Betrayal

9 thoughts on “Yes. They’re Serious

  1. LuvinLunch

    And in the centre of this mess are children in desperate need of help…

    We need Tusla to tell us, what % of child sexual abuse allegations have they deemed unfounded since 2014.

    My guess is 97%. Will someone give me odds on that?

      1. LuvinLunch

        Genuine question …. why not? Truth is i dont know anything about bookies so i don’t understand your comment.

        I know we have a 2% conviction rate for child sexual abuse. Tusla are largely responsible. They must be marking a high % unfounded but they don’t collate that data.

        Maybe I’ll go for 92% of allegations are marked unfounded.

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