Local TD, Louise O’Reilly, who is her party’s Health spokesperson, has raised her concerns over findings by the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) which uncovered that four out of five foster carers in Tusla’s North Dublin Area, which covers the North County have not been reviewed within the required period.
O’Reilly said: “Let me be clear at the outset that the vast majority of foster carers do an incredible job. They give more of themselves than any of us will ever know, in fact, they give the whole of themselves.”
“However, revelations in the last number of years of both recent and historic abuse scandals involving children in foster care have highlighted the need for Tusla, the Child and Family Agency, to carry out stringent reviews and vetting.”
“Therefore, it is quite worrying that HIQA have found that 82 per cent of foster carers in North Dublin, have not had a review in more than three years, while 14 per cent did not have their Garda vetting updated in the same period. The welfare of children is of paramount importance and when it comes to vulnerable children in foster care it is even more important,” she said.
“That is why it was heart-warming to see that good practice was also found in Dublin North, and that when assessments were carried out that the reviews stated that those foster carers were of a good quality.
“It is now important that the plan submitted to have all reviews up to date by June 2018 is followed through on to the letter and that we can be sure that those vulnerable children in receipt of foster care are safe, healthy and happy,” she concluded.