Immediate Release: 21st July 2016

The latest HIQA report in the Midlands again raises serious child protection and welfare concerns. The report found that only one national standard of 27 was fully met, 22 standards ‘required improvement’ and four standards were identified as having ‘significant risk’.

Key issues identified in the report included; a high number of unallocated cases, where HIQA Inspectors escalated a number of these cases to high priority as a result of the lack of timely and/or appropriate intervention.

While it was found that when children were allocated a social worker, they received an adequate service, the report highlights serious deficiencies where the duty team mainly consisted of agency staff.

Speaking following publication of the report, CEO of EPIC Jennifer Gargan made the following statement:

“Findings from this report are extremely worrying. The report shows how   inexperienced staff are at the coal face of frontline services. It is extremely        concerning that this inspection found the area was still not fully compliant with  Children First.

Again, the report highlights that while high risk child protection cases were prioritised, there is a lack of understanding of the chronic, harmful, long term effects of neglect. These cases need timely intervention, however this will only happen when the State adequately resources Tusla and efficient management systems are in place in order to ensure every child referred receives a timely and high quality service.”

The report also found inconsistencies in reviewing and implementing findings from serious incidents.


  1. The HIQA Inspection report is available to read here (accessed 21/07/16)

For all media enquiries or to arrange an interview please contact:

Jennifer Gargan, Director of EPIC                    

Telephone: 01 8727 661 Mobile: 086 607 3866

Email:  Website:

EPIC (formerly IAYPIC) is an independent association that works throughout the Republic of Ireland, with and for children and young people who are currently living in care or who have had an experience of living in care.

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