Parents kept in the dark on creches breaking regulations

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Parents are being left in the dark about the location of creches that are in breach of Tusla regulations Galway East TD Anne Rabbitte has said.

The Fianna Fáil spokesperson for Children and Youth Affairs said she has been informed about 41 creches deemed to be “critical”, which is to say they are in breach of regulations.

Despite the fact that Tusla has proposed removing some of these offenders from the register the child welfare agency has not disclosed their locations.

“It’s nothing short of scandalous that we now know there are crèches operating that Tusla is trying to shut down, but parents are being left entirely in the dark,” Anne Rabbitte said.

“Tusla won’t pinpoint the locations of these crèches because of ‘due process’ so how are parents to know if their crèche is breaching its conditions? W

“Where’s the transparency?” Deputy Rabbitte asked. “When a parent is leaving their child with a crèche they deserve certainty that their child is being looked after well.”

Deputy Rabbitte was informed of the 41 creches that have fallen afoul of Tusla at a meeting of Dáil Joint Committee for Children and Youth Affairs this week.

“It is worth noting that a critical status on Tusla’s risk-rating system implies a high and intensive level of scrutiny by Tusla’s National Review and Enforcement Panel.”

“It does not imply that children attending these services are at risk, or that they should be removed from the service,” Deputy Rabbitte added.

However she accused Minister Katherine Zappone of taking a “hands off and leisurely” approach to strengthening Tusla’s inspection powers that has left the system profoundly broken.