24 Ean 2011, 17.29

The Oireachtas Committee on Health and Children will attempt to establish what progress has been made in implementing the recommendations of a report into abuses at a residential centre for the intellectually disabled at tomorrow’s (25th) meeting.

The meeting will take place at 2:15 pm in Committee Room 2 of Leinster House. Representatives from the Irish Human Rights Commission (IHRC) will attend.

A report published last year by the Irish Human Rights Commission which investigated the operation of the John Paul Centre, Ballybane, Co Galway for persons with severe to profound intellectual disabilities, found that the rights of residents had been severely infringed.

The report concluded that the centre run by the Brothers of Charity provided inadequate accommodation, had insufficient staff, lacked the multidisciplinary care and was underfunded. In total, the Human Rights Commission has made more than 40 recommendations for changes which have implications for disability services in the centre and nationally.

Committee Chairman, Seán O’Fearghail TD said;
“Some of the findings of the IHRC Commission were startling. It found serious gaps existed in the care to residents of the home. It noted that some of the failings were down to problems with legislative and policy frameworks and called for the introduction of independent inspections of residential services without delay.

It also urged that immediate action be taken in the home itself and insisted that intervention was required at a national level to overhaul the system of care for intellectually disabled persons. Tomorrow’s meeting will be an excellent opportunity to ascertain if any advancement has been made in implementing these proposals.”

Daniel English
Oireachtas Communications Unit
01 618 4484
087 6944926

Full Membership of the Committee:
Seán Ó Fearghaíl TD, Fianna Fáil, (Chariman)
Jan O'Sullivan, Labour Party, (Vice Chairman)
Margaret Conlon, TD, Fianna Fáil
Kathleen Lynch, TD, Labour Party
Bernard Allen, TD, Fine Gael
Bobby Aylward, TD, Fianna Fáil
Niall Blaney, TD, Fianna Fáil
Paul Connaughton, TD, Fine Gael
Beverley Flynn, TD, Fianna Fail
Dan Neville, TD, Fine Gael
Charlie O'Connor, TD Fianna Fáil
Rory O'Hanlon, TD, Fianna Fáil
James Reilly, TD, Fine Gael
Senator Geraldine Feeney, Fianna Fáil
Senator Frances Fitzgerald, Fine Gael
Senator Phil Prendergast, Labour Party
Senator Mary White, Fianna Fáil