The revelation that the leading children’s Special Care Unit in Ireland must close is yet another example of the State failing children, according to Labour’s Spokesperson on Children, Senator Alex White.
“The Minister for Children must explain how conditions at the Special Care Unit in Ballydowd became so unacceptable that there was no option but to close. I would question why it took the HIQA inspection report to recommend ‘urgent action’, before this issue was raised with the Minister responsible.
“The report highlights the ‘serious difficulties of trust’ between management and staff. This was taking place at what was meant to be the leading care unit in the State. It appears that the failure began when the €13 million facility opened only nine years ago.
“There must be immediate assurances that the children currently in the care unit are transferred in a dignified and safe manner.
“It is another addition to the catalogue of this government’s failures on children. Following the publication of the Ryan Report, the Minister promised that ‘the State must now and in the future, deliver care services that nurture and support children.’ The closure of this facility is another striking example of the government’s lamentable failure to deliver such care services.”