Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Children Anne Rabbitte TD says the publication of a HIQA review raises serious questions over the quality and safety of foster care in Ireland.

Deputy Rabbitte said, “HIQA has published two reports which highlight serious issues with Ireland’s child protection services after conducting a review of the Dublin South Central and Care Visions fostering services.

“Among the issues highlighted is the confusion over how to manage welfare concerns, delays in the carrying out of relative foster care assessments and a complete lack of regular reviews of the quality of placement’s. These concerns cut right to the heart of the foster care system and raise serious questions over the ability to ensure that foster children have a safe and happy childhood.

“Sadly, this is not the first review to suggest that there are serious deficiencies in Ireland’s foster care system. Already in 2017 we have heard that foster care services failed to protect vulnerable individuals, such as Grace. This is simply not good enough and I call on Minister Zappone to explain how she will address these issues in a meaningful manner.

“It is not good enough to continue responding to crises in a piecemeal and reactionary fashion as they arise. Instead, we need proactive planning to help deliver high-quality foster care.”