Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Questions (344)

Catherine Murphy


344. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Social Protection if her attention has been drawn to the lengthy delays persons on community employment schemes are experiencing in having Garda vetting applications processed; the total number of persons who have not been able to participate on a community employment scheme due to the failure of vetting to be completed in a timely manner; if she has highlighted such problems to her colleagues; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [9940/13]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The Department of Social Protection is committed to the protection and welfare of children and vulnerable adults. Approval to work, or train to work, with children and/or vulnerable adults is granted upon successful completion of the recruitment and selection process which must include vetting checks with the Garda Central Vetting Unit. No individual may work or train with children and/or vulnerable adults pending the outcome of the Garda vetting process.

I am advised that there is an increase in the time taken to process applications in recent months. There are approximately 1,100 DSP applications for Garda vetting currently with the Garda Central Vetting Unit. Of these applications, circa 20% are there over 14 weeks. I understand that this is due to the volume of applications. In response to these demands I understand that additional resources have been allocated to address this matter.

Every effort is being made to ensure that applicants to CE schemes where Garda vetting is required, once a satisfactory outcome is achieved that the applicant can proceed to take up the place.