Biannual Review of Child Protection Audit confirms a High Level of Child Protection in All Four Sites

The biannual child protection audit of the schools and residences has been completed. The report confirms that there is a “high standard of child protection in all four sites”, but does make some recommendations for improvement which will be implemented in the Autumn namely;

Child Protection Information and Supports

CIDP is committed to ensuring the care and protection of all children availing of its services. With that in mind CIDP contracted in 2006 with a child care expert to review its policies and procedures and ensure that what was in place was appropriate and benchmarked against the best standards in the country.

These policies and procedures are available to all staff, children and parents and are on this website. The policies and procedures have been discussed and agreed with the staff and their trade unions and sent individually to all parents. Their introduction in 2007 was accompanied by a series of training workshops and the appointment of trained designated Liaison persons in each facility run by CIDP. Two staff have also been appointed as designated trainers for CIDP staff to ensure a continuity of training for all staff current and new. The designated Liaison persons meet with the CEO, facilitated by the Diocesan Child Protection Advisor and an outside consultant three times a year to review and coordinate activities in this key area.

The CIDP Board and CEO conduct an annual audit of the implementation of these policies and procedures to ensure from a governance perspective that they are carried through responsibility. This includes ensuring that staff working with children are all vetted by the Gardai, and that their references are checked. While the policies and procedures are in place it is no guarantee that inappropriate incidences can occur especially among peers, but these policies and procedures minimise the possibility of this happening and ensure that if the CIDP are aware of an incident it is reported immediately to the statutory authorities and appropriate actions undertaken to protect the child or children in question.

CIDP is aware of past cases of abuse of children who attended schools for the Deaf run by Religious Orders. CIDP employed an outside professional with a Child Protection background to review and examine all files in its possession past and present. The results of this examination have been reported to the Ryan Commission who published its report this week. CIDP took over the Management and Trusteeship of these schools and residences in 1997 and is very conscious of the abuse caused to many Deaf children in the past. The current Board and CEO of CIDP apologises unreservedly to those affected by this abuse and are committed to ensuring it never happens again.

The reporting system and recognition of the problem at that time was none existent. Also for the children and their parents in the past there was no recourse to a structure that would either listen or speak up for a child or parent. The prevailing culture would have also felt constrained from doing so.

Since then fundamental changes in the structure have taken place, new Management structures, Boards of Management, Standards of Governance, Lay principals and Directors of Care, Lay chairpersons on each Board and now a new CEO whose job it is to ensure best practice in this area. New policies and procedures relating to child protection are in place, implemented by trained staff who operate under a formal supervision structure.

The systems in place now are very sensitive and show up any issue of bullying or teenage sexual exploration. There is zero tolerance and all issues are recorded and reported by experience trained professional staff to the appropriate outside bodies. In order to ensure that the current policies are communicated effectively to both staff and children an independent review by Dr. Kevin McCoy has recently been undertaken. Results of the review will be published in June 2011.

CIDP has agreed with Staff Care Counselling Service and the DeafHear.ie Counselling Service that they will provide services for Deaf people who have been abused. These services are free and interpreters will be arranged for any person who wishes to access these services again free.

Staff Care is a non denominational agency working in the North and South of Ireland, set up initially to serve the staff of agencies experiencing trauma but now working as well with those who have experienced abuse.

DeafHear.ie is an independent agency providing services to Deaf and Hard of Hearing People. It has a staff of Social Workers, a Family Therapist and a Mental Health Service. The Social Work/Family Therapy staff are skilled counsellors generally operating through ISL. For those requiring professional Mental Health Services, please contact the service directly at:
Tel: 01 8175738
Fax: 01 8723816
Text: 086 8056114
Email: carol.mcternan@deafhear.ie

The contact numbers and the methods by which the agencies can be contacted are listed below:

STAFF CARE
Phone: (24 / 7 Freephone) - 1800 409 388
Fax:(one working day response) - 004890565727
Email: (one working day response) - staffcare@belfasttrust-hscni.net
For further information on StaffCare see: www.staffcare.ie

If any person is interested in using the services of Staff Care for counseling they can contact Staff Care via the numbers above and should send their details to Staff Care using this form

Video instructions on how to use the form below:

DEAFHEAR.IE
Phone: (Open Mon-Fri: 9am - 1pm and 2-5pm) - 01-8175700
Fax / Text: - 01-8783629
Minicom: - 01-8175777
Email: - info@deafhear.ie
For further information on DeafHear.ie see: www.deafhear.ie

For any other information please contact Liam O'Dwyer at lodwyer@cidp.ie or text 087-6753475

CIDP is also conscious of the needs of its own staff both past and present and has put in place an agreement with Staff Care to be available to its own and past staff (as well as Deaf people requiring counselling) who may be understandably distressed at the abuse of children in the past who attended the Deaf Schools and Residences. The contact number of the Staff Care helpline is detailed above.

If readers wish to discuss the information on this website or express their views or concerns they can contact Liam O'Dwyer CEO at 01-8300522 or 087-6753475 or email lodwyer@cidp.ie

Downloads

Child Protection Policies and Procedures
Vulnerable Adult Protection Policy
Supervision Standards
Supervision Policy

Other websites

Accord
Dublin Diocesan Website
Dublin Rape Crisis Centre
Health Service Executive (HSE)
National Adults Counselling Service
National Counselling Service

Ryan Commission funds translation of the key aspects of the report into ISL

The Ryan Commission has funded the translation of the key aspects of the report as they relate to Deaf people into ISL. The Chapters on Beechpark, St. Mary's Cabra, St. Joseph's Cabra and the Executive Summary are now available in ISL in DVD format. The agreement between the Ryan Commission office and CIDP is that 500 DVD's are available via CIDP, the Irish Deaf Society (IDS) and DeafHear.ie. The IDS have themselves translated the Murphy Report into ISL, this is available on DVD from the IDS. To view the ISL translation of the Ryan Commission on the chapters of Beechpark, St. Mary's Cabra, St. Joseph's Cabra and the Executive Summary click here

Confidentiality Policy

A new Confidentiality Policy has been agreed with the staff and residents of the residences managed by CIDP. This policy and the subsequent training will ensure clarity in the area of sensitive information. This policy and the subsequent training will ensure clarity in the area of dealing with sensitive information. Policy may be downloaded on this site.

Child Protection Audit of Schools and Residences 2011

CIDP has recently (May 2011) completed an audit of its Child Protection policies and procedures as implemented in St. Joseph’s school and residence and in St. Mary’s school and residence. The audit was conducted by an outside independent child protection expert Dr. Kevin McCoy and his colleague Mary Stewart. The review which indicated that there is a high standard of child protection in all four environments set out the following recommendations;