Tag Archives: Child protection

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)




From yesterday’s Sunday Times, Justine McCarthy wrote about the Children’s Ombudsman’s report on alleged physical and sexual abuse at a Co. Kilkenny primary school.

In March 2011, the administration office for the [Stay Safe] programme told the ombudsman’s office it had not provided training at the school since 1993.

The school’s child-abuse prevention policy, which was reviewed in March 2002 and applied at the time of the alleged abuse states: “The Stay Safe programme has been approved by the board of management as a teacher’s aid to be used in accordance with the Catholic ethos which demands that the law of God and of the church, and not the child’s feelings, be the guiding principle.

In 2006, the year the abuse allegations began, a questionnaire was sent to all schools to determine how Stay Safe was being implemented. Had there been any difficulties in implementing it? The school replied “yes”, saying it had “examined it and use only what staff, parents and board deem suitable to [their] ethos“.

There you go now.

Complete Failure (Justine McCarthy, Sunday Times) [behind paywall]

What the Doctor ordered:

“In addition, I wish to apologise for my own previous lack of understanding  of the sinister and recedivist nature of the child abuser, and the life-long damage that this destructive behaviour has on victims. 
Most of all – whilst I did notify the civil authorities at the time of these complaints – I profoundly regret and apologise for moving the priests concerned to different parishes thereby placing others at serious risk.
Both these parish changes occurred in the early to mid-1990s before the 1996 publication of Child Sexual Abuse: Framework for a Church Response, the first Catholic Church guidelines for the handling of abuse issues. 
Whilst no further abuse has been reported, this act was a grave mistake on my part.  I operate very differently now and will continue to do so in the future.”

Bishop of Clonfert, Dr John Kirby

Child Protection Reports Live (RTE)

Lars Biscuits writes:

Brendan Smyth’s extradition controversy brought down the Albert Reynolds’ government in 1994.  It was one of the biggest news stories of that year after the World Cup and the IRA ceasefire. How Bishop Kirby can say he did not understand “the recidivist nature of the child abuser” lacks all credibility when Smyth’s crimes were so well publicised.


Listen here: Bishop Thought Paedophilia Was “Friendship That Crossed Boundary Line”(Newstalk.ie)