HIQA report into Cork foster services ‘deeply worrying’ – Mitchell
Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Children and Youth Affairs Denise Mitchell TD says she has serious concerns over the findings of an inspection report by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) into the standard of the Cork area foster care services.
Deputy Mitchell said:
“It is deeply worrying that foster services in Cork were deemed to be majorly non-compliant in areas such as ensuring young people in foster care are protected from abuse and neglect, supervision and support for foster carers; and reviews of foster carers.
“The report shows that Tusla failed to record 40% of child protection and welfare allegations submitted to it against foster carers last year. It is also very concerning that inspectors could not be fully-assured that a child would not be placed with a carer against whom there was an outstanding complaint.
“The report also found major non-compliance in terms of ensuring that foster carers had adequate supervision and support from qualified social workers. That is quite alarming, foster carers must be assured of access to the information, advice and professional support needed to meet any challenges they experience.
“We are seeing in recent weeks more and more reports which are critical of Tusla and its role in safeguarding children. It cannot be allowed to continue in this manner and the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs must address this urgently. Part of this means ensuring that Tusla has adequate resources and staffing levels to make sure Child Protection standards are acceptable and that children are not at risk.”