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Child and Family Agency

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 23 October 2018

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

Questions (584)

Mattie McGrath


584. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs her views on the issues raised by the disclosures tribunal with respect to the Child and Family Agency, Tusla; the measures she is taking in order to address them; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [43425/18]

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Written answers (Question to Children)

In my view the report from the Disclosures Tribunal is devastating in its assessment of the poor management, supervision and record management in Tusla's Cavan Monaghan area.  It is clear that the standards of local management and administration expected from a publicly funded body were not met. In this context, the apology made by Tusla to the McCabe family is the least that could be expected.

I have written and spoken to the Chair of Tusla about the findings of the Tribunal and I will be meeting the Board of Tusla shortly to underline the need to address these and other serious shortcomings in Tusla, as identified by the report. 

The Deputy will be aware that in March 2017, as a result of what had come to light in respect of Sgt McCabe and his family, I directed HIQA to carry out a separate statutory investigation into Tusla.  This report was published in June 2018. 

In September 2018, I received the Action Plan from Tusla's Board to address the findings from the HIQA investigation. The implementation of this plan will also address many of the findings in the Disclosures Tribunal report.

Tusla has stated that it is addressing the findings in the Disclosures Tribunal report by:

- Reorganising and improving management and governance arrangements;

- Introducing a dedicated specialist team to manage retrospective abuse;

- Increasing supervision of the staff involved;

- Increasing quality assurance of policies on the ground.                                                           

Tusla has accepted that the practice and governance in this case was exceptionally poor and has commenced a HR process around the management of this case.  It is expected that this process will be completed in due course.

The Government has increased funding to Tusla by over €30 million for 2019, which will enable these and other reforms to take effect.