Problems identified by HIQA in Dublin Foster Care Services are not bad practice, but bad Government

19th April 2017

Failures to adequately resource and support social workers and child protection is the real problem
Cllr Patrick Costello, Green Party Spokesperson for Children said today: “Concerns identified by HIQA in recently published reports are the fault of government, not social workers. Without adequate resources an already difficult job becomes impossible.
“HIQA have highlighted the under resourced aftercare services as a concern. The lack of these aftercare resources is entirely the Government’s fault for failing to provide the resources and to reform aftercare legislation.
“There is a problem with recruitment of foster carers in general. Foster care Social Workers have not been given the time and resources to undertake recruitment leading to a lack of foster carers. This was also seen in the Child and Family Law Reports where social workers couldn’t take children at risk into care due to there being no foster carers. Under these circumstances it’s not surprising that the lack of culturally appropriate foster carers was also highlighted by HIQA as a concern.
“The problems in child protection services have been building and are a direct result of government failures. In October 2015 a leaked Tusla briefing document for Cabinet said it was in a constant struggle to stay within budget and that it was in default of its statutory obligations, they warned then that problems like this would happen and the government has not responded adequately.
“The HIQA report stated that inspectors found that on a day-to-day basis, social workers at Dublin South Central ‘promoted and respected children’s rights’ and the vast majority of children had ‘warm relationships with their foster families’ – This shows that the social work practice is good and of a high standard.”