Tuesday, 12 November 2019

Ceisteanna (499, 500, 501)

Micheál Martin

Ceist:

499. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs her views on the possible sale of land (details supplied) due to the services that are provided from there; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46192/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Micheál Martin

Ceist:

500. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs her plans for the services provided on lands (details supplied) in view of the fact the grounds are now for sale; her plans to purchase same; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46193/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Micheál Martin

Ceist:

501. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the status of a centre (details supplied) in view of the fact that the grounds are for sale; if the centre is exempt from the sale; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46194/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 499 to 501, inclusive, together.

The Centre located on the site to which the Deputy refers is in receipt of funding from a number of public bodies that include the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection and the Health Service Executive (HSE). Certain services provided by the HSE and Tusla are also located on the campus. I understand the lands were advertised for sale in 2018.

Tusla, the Child and Family Agency provides funding of some €1.5 million annually for family and community services provided by the Centre located on site. I am aware that Tusla is engaged at a senior level with representatives of the property owners and the Centre in question.

It is important that all of the facts are established before any decisions are made. I will be happy to update the Deputy when I have any further information in relation to this engagement.

Separately, my Department allocates funding of some €200,000 to run a range of Early Learning and Care (ELC) and School Age Childcare (SAC) programmes. I am aware that Cork City Childcare Committee and Pobal are currently engaging with relevant people regarding these services, and will continue to provide support as and when required. My officials will keep me apprised of the situation.

I know that many people who work for the Centre, or who engage with its services, will be anxious to know what the sale of the property means for them. The Centre in question provides valuable services to children and families. The cessation of any service for vulnerable children and families would not be welcomed by my Department or Tusla.