Written Answers. - Child Prostitution.

Peadar Clohessy

Question:

68 Mr. Clohessy asked the Minister for Justice whether she or anyone in her Department has been made aware of increasing numbers of homeless youths becoming involved in prostitution; the action, if any, which has been taken in this regard; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [9192/97]

Liz O'Donnell

Question:

119 Ms O'Donnell asked the Minister for Justice whether she or anyone in her Department has been made aware of the increasing numbers of homeless youths becoming involved in prostitution; the action, if any, which has been taken in this regard; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [9379/97]

I propose to take Questions Nos. 68 and 119 together.

I am informed by the Garda authorities that they, in conjunction with the health boards and other statutory bodies, monitor and investigate all complaints relating to prostitution involving youths.

I understand that the Eastern Health Board has recently established a working group to investigate the problem of child prostitution.

The Garda Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Investigation Unit is notified where prostitution involving minors is suspected. I assure the Deputy that all complaints made to the Garda alleging the sexual abuse of children are fully and rigorously investigated.