Minister Zappone’s Child Protection services review inadequate; we need a fully independent audit – Ó Laoghaire
Today during Parliamentary Questions in the Dáil, Sinn Féin spokesperson on Children and Youth Affairs Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD called on Minister Zappone to ensure a full audit of Túsla would be carried out.
He also stated that such an audit of Túsla’s Child Protection services must remain fully independent and encompass more than just a Túsla commissioned review of section 13 powers.
Speaking this afternoon, Deputy Ó Laoghaire said;
“I noted with interest Minister, the announcement on RTÉ radio on Sunday, and here in the chamber today of an independent review.
“This follows on from a call I have been making since the publication of the report, for full audit of the Child Protection system, with particular focus on, but not exclusive to, section 13. This is crucial to provide a roadmap in transforming our child protection services.
“I think that what is needed now is something along a vision for change – something we can all buy in to and work towards.
“In that sense I welcomed the announcement of independent research but it must be a fully independent audit.
“It must be independent of Túsla, and should be under the remit of Minister Zappone’s department – allowing full access to the Social Work files, but also court service reports, where relevant.
“It must have broad terms of reference including all matters relating to section 13, and any other child protection matters or services which the person carrying out the audit considers relevant.
“In addition, Túsla, or any other agency must also not be allowed veto over its recommendations.
“Again, any review of the section 13 powers must be far reaching, allowing for adaptability if further issues are to arise during this process.”