Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Disability, Margaret Murphy O’Mahony has said that we, as a society, cannot solely rely on health workers and voluntary bodies to report instances of vulnerable people being abused.

Deputy Murphy O’Mahony made the call following the publication of a report from the National Safeguarding Committee (NSC) which showed that nearly two thirds of allegations were reported by voluntary agencies or through nurses.

“While it’s welcome that these allegations are being reported, it is of concern to me that many instances of abuse may go unreported due to capacity demands in these bodies.

“Every single one of us has an obligation to keep our eyes open, and to be protective of vulnerable people, and, in particular, of people with limited communications skills.

“People with intellectual disabilities are highly vulnerable. They, in many instances, cannot voice their concerns over their care, and I think we all need to do our bit to protect them abuse.

“Nearly 8000 allegations of abuse were reported in 2016, but who knows if this is the totality of all abuse in the country. I really hope that it is, but we can never be too careful.

“The NSC has launched an awareness campaign, and I believe that we all have a role to play in reporting anything we believe to be putting vulnerable people at risk,” concluded Murphy O’Mahony.