Laois-Offaly Fianna Fáil TD Barry Cowen has said he is cautiously optimistic for the future of Clara Tots 2 Teens in Co Offaly.

Deputy Cowen met with parents and management at Clara Tots 2 Teens on Friday evening, following the temporary closure of the facility last week.  He welcomed the initial responses from Offaly Childcare, Pobail, the Department of Children and management and said all parties must work together to secure the future of this facility. 

“I am informed by all the relevant parties that engineering, mechanical and electrical inspections are to take place at Clara Tots 2 Teens in the coming week. This will include a fire safety inspection by Offaly County Council,” said Deputy Cowen. 

“I am also assured that the capital grant of €36,000 awarded to Clara Tots 2 Teens earlier this month remains approved by the Department of Children. This will allow the facility to carry out much needed upgrades and repairs. 

“This situation has been a very upsetting for parents, staff and for the entire local community.  But these problems can be resolved. The State must now do everything in its power to support the facility, restore the excellent service it provides and secure its future in Clara.

“I will continue to work with the facility and push the authorities for progress to resolve the current problems once and for and for all. I want to pay tribute to the staff at Clara Tots 2 Teens for their on-going hard work and dedication during what has been a difficult time,” said Deputy Cowen.