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Referendum crucial to vindicating children’s rights – Ó Snodaigh

19 May, 2010 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD


Speaking to a Joint Sinn Féin-Labour motion on children’s rights in the Dáil, Sinn Féin TD for Dublin South Central Aengus Ó’Snodaigh has said that a referendum is crucial to vindicating children’s rights; that it would ensure that this government, future governments and we as a society take our responsibilities to protect children far more seriously.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:

“This motion tabled jointly by my party Sinn Féin and the Labour Party is timely and it is our hope that it will go some way towards forcing the government to wake up and realise that children’s rights is something that will not go away.

“How many reports does the Government need to see before they realise that there needs to be a radical overhaul of child protection services in this State?
The report on the tragic life and death of Tracey Fay in State care caused huge concern and we have now witnessed the murder of Daniel McAnaspie who was also in the care of the HSE.
“This is not a new concern. It has been pointed out repeatedly over many years. Thousands of children who are vulnerable and at risk are still being denied access even to initial assessments of their plight.
“In the wake of the Ryan Report and the Murphy Report, the report issued last week by Emily Logan, the Ombudsman for Children on the implementation of Children First (child protection guidelines) was yet another damning indictment of the pitiful situation of the child protection system where 11 findings of “unsound administration” were made against public bodies and 22 recommendations to improve the system.

“By refusing to hold a referendum, this government is quite literally putting more and more children in danger. There is no excuse for this inaction and there is no excuse for delay. A referendum is crucial to vindicating children’s rights. It will ensure that this government, future governments but also we as a society take our responsibilities to protect children far more seriously.

“This government must recognise the rights of children and name the date for referendum.” ENDS

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