61. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the additional resources her Department has provided to support aftercare plans for children leaving State care at 18 years of age from 1 September 2017; her plans to enhance this provision in 2018; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 43423/17 asked on 17 Oct 2017 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone): The Deputy will be aware that from 1 September 2017, children leaving state care upon reaching the age of 18 have a statutory right to an aftercare plan to identify any future supports they may require. 
The transition to independent adulthood can be particularly challenging for children and young people in care. Tusla had advocated for this important change to assist young people in making the transition from a young person in...

1439. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of private and State residential care settings, by county, in each of the years 2014 to 2016 and to date in 2017; the number of children placed in residential care in each of these years indicating the numbers for private and State residential services; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 19912/17 asked on 02 May 2017 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone) (Deputy Katherine Zappone): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1439 and 1440 together.
The latest figures from Tusla, the Child and Family Agency, indicates that, at the end of February 2016, there were 6,309 children in care. Of these, 355 (6%) were in a residential placement of which 177 were in a private residential placement.
A child is placed in a residential setting only when they have an identified need that can be met by t...

1440. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of secure care placements, by county, indicating the number of private and State run placements in each of the years 2014 to 2016 and to date in 2017; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 19913/17 asked on 02 May 2017 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone) (Deputy Katherine Zappone): I propose to take Questions Nos. 1439 and 1440 together.
The latest figures from Tusla, the Child and Family Agency, indicates that, at the end of February 2016, there were 6,309 children in care. Of these, 355 (6%) were in a residential placement of which 177 were in a private residential placement.
A child is placed in a residential setting only when they have an identified need that can be met by t...

17. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of children in residential care here, indicating the units and numbers and the private service providers and numbers; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 22970/16 asked on 21 Jul 2016 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Katherine Zappone): There were 343 children in residential care at the end of April 2016.
- This represents approximately 5% of all children in care.
- Just over half, 185 children, were in private residential care centres. 
- I have been informed that there are currently 146 children’s residential centres, of which - 81 are privately managed, Tusla manages 39 and 26 are managed by voluntary bodies. 
- The most recent figures available show tha...

401. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the status of refurbishment works at Crannóg Nua at Portrane in County Dublin including when the unit will be operational and the number of special care places which will be available; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 5537/16 asked on 06 Apr 2016 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I propose to take Questions Nos. 401 to 403, inclusive, together.
Special care is intended as a short term secure care placement in a therapeutic environment with the intention of returning the child to a community or family based setting as soon as possible. Special care is used to address the risk of harm that may be caused to a child’s life, health, safety, development or welfare by their behaviour. There are three special care ...

402. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of children residing in special care units in Ballydowd special care unit, in Gleann Álainn special care unit, and in Coovagh House special care unit, from January 2015 to date, by month, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 5538/16 asked on 06 Apr 2016 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I propose to take Questions Nos. 401 to 403, inclusive, together.
Special care is intended as a short term secure care placement in a therapeutic environment with the intention of returning the child to a community or family based setting as soon as possible. Special care is used to address the risk of harm that may be caused to a child’s life, health, safety, development or welfare by their behaviour. There are three special care ...

403. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of children residing in care arrangements outside of the State under orders made by the High Court; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 5539/16 asked on 06 Apr 2016 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I propose to take Questions Nos. 401 to 403, inclusive, together.
Special care is intended as a short term secure care placement in a therapeutic environment with the intention of returning the child to a community or family based setting as soon as possible. Special care is used to address the risk of harm that may be caused to a child’s life, health, safety, development or welfare by their behaviour. There are three special care ...

35. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of children in care who are still awaiting allocation of a social worker; the number without a written care plan; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 19540/15 asked on 27 May 2015 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): The latest figures I have to hand from Tusla, the Child and Family Agency, indicate that, in February 2015, there were 6,393 children in care. Almost 93% of children in care were in a foster care setting. Of all children in care, over 92% (5,878) have an allocated social worker and 90% (5,739) have an up to date written care plan. This indicates that 515 children in care are without a dedicated social worker and that there were 654...

277. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if he will consider raising the age of leaving care to 21 years in line with the Scottish model; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 17451/15 asked on 06 May 2015 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): The primary legislation in Ireland governing child care policy is the Child Care Act 1991 and the Child and Family Agency Act 2013. Under these Acts, the Child and Family Agency has a statutory duty to promote the welfare of children who are not receiving adequate care and protection. The definition of a child contained in both Acts is that of a person under 18 years of age who is not or has not been married. A child may be brought i...

341. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question No. 319 of 30 September 2014, if the report which he undertook to supply is now to hand. (Question 44252/14 asked on 18 Nov 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I have requested the information from the Child and Family Agency and I will revert to the Deputy when this information is to hand.
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332. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question No. 646 of 1 July 2014, if the joint protocol developed between the Child and Family Agency and the Garda National Immigration Bureau to enhance the capacity of both agencies to locate unaccompanied minors who go missing after presenting at Irish ports or during transfer to their place of care is now in place. (Question 35294/14 asked on 23 Sep 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): As this is a service matter, I have asked the Child and Family Agency to respond directly to the Deputy with the most up-to-date information.
 ...

731. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question No. 324 of 16 July 2014, if he will confirm that the projects referred to in the reply, of four additional beds in Gleann Alainn in County Cork, 12 additional beds in Crannóg Nua, County Dublin and the upgrade and refurbishment works at Ballydowd, County Dublin, will all commence in 2014; if further funding over and above the €1.1 million allocation will be required to complete these projects in the time frame of 2014 to 2016; and when it is expected that the individual projects in each of the three centres will be completed. (Question 33653/14 asked on 17 Sep 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I propose to take Questions Nos. 731 and 744 together.
Special Care involves the detention of a child for his or her own welfare and protection in a Special Care Unit on order of the High Court. Special Care Units differ from ordinary residential care in that the Units offer higher staff ratios, on-site education as well as specialised input such as psychology and child psychiatric services. The child is not detained as a result of ...

735. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of unaccompanied minors in the care of the State in the years 2012, 2013 and to date 2014; and the types of care settings in which unaccompanied minors were cared for during this period. (Question 33657/14 asked on 17 Sep 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I have requested the information from the Child and Family Agency and I will revert to the Deputy when this information is to hand.
 ...

744. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question 319 of 16 July 2014, if he will provide an updated report on the refurbishment works scheduled for Crannóg Nua High Support Unit at Portrane; and if a construction team has now been appointed to carry out the refurbishment works. (Question 34291/14 asked on 17 Sep 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I propose to take Questions Nos. 731 and 744 together.
Special Care involves the detention of a child for his or her own welfare and protection in a Special Care Unit on order of the High Court. Special Care Units differ from ordinary residential care in that the Units offer higher staff ratios, on-site education as well as specialised input such as psychology and child psychiatric services. The child is not detained as a result of ...

319. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question No. 626 of 1 July 2014, if he will provide an exact timeline of when it is expected that the Crannóg Nua high support unit will be fully refurbished and converted into a special care unit. (Question 31849/14 asked on 16 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): As part of the Child and Family Agency’s commitment to develop a comprehensive continuum of care services to meet the divergent and complex needs of all children in care, Crannóg Nua High Support Unit in Portrane is to be redesignated to function as a Special Care Unit. I am advised that the last child left Crannog Nua on 23rd June 2014. There are approximately 14 days remaining in the tendering process for the appointment of a con...

321. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question Nos. 623 to 625 of 1 July 2014, if he will confirm if it his Department’s policy to completely phase out the use of high support in favour of converting existing high support units to special care units. (Question 31852/14 asked on 16 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I have requested the information from the Child and Family Agency and I will forward this to the Deputy when it becomes available.
 ...

322. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question Nos. 623 to 625 of 1 July 2014, the reason a reference is made to children placed in special care outside of this jurisdiction being placed in secure psychiatric facilities when one of the criteria under which a decision is made to place a child in special care is that they do not have a mental illness. (Question 31853/14 asked on 16 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): Special Care involves the detention of a child on order of the High Court. The child is not detained as a result of criminal offences but for his or her own welfare and protection in one of three special care units in Ireland. The Deputy is correct when he says that the one of the criteria for placement in special care is that children do not have a psychiatric disorder. However, sometimes children (whether in special care or othe...

323. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question Nos. 623 to 625 of 1 July 2014, if he will provide further details of the children detained under special care orders outside of the State since January 2014; if he will provide a breakdown on the basis of the number, age and gender of the children placed; the name and location of each of the institutions in which the children were placed; and if he will provide a breakdown of the cost of each of these placements. (Question 31854/14 asked on 16 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): The Child and Family Agency has provided the following data in relation to the children/young people who have been placed in secure Out of State placements from 1 January 2014 to 11 July 2014 :
 1/1/2014 – 11/7/2014 Age Gender Date Order Discharged St. Andrews, Northhampton 18 F 8/6/2014 – returned to Ireland St. Andrews, Northampton 17 M 18/07/2014- Returned to Ireland St. Andrews, Northampton 17 M 11/3/2014 – m...

324. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question No. 626 of 1 July 2014, the amount of excess of €1 million allocated to progress national special care development projects for 2014; if he will provide a breakdown of the specific projects during 2014 which are being paid for out of that fund; the location of each project and the number of increased beds achieved. (Question 31855/14 asked on 16 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): I have requested the information from the Child and Family Agency and I will forward this to the Deputy when it becomes available.
 ...

328. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question Nos. 623 to 625 of 01 July 2014, if he will clarify what is meant by the waiting time of approximately five weeks for a special care placement; if this period of waiting time relates to the time between a determination having been made by the national special care admission and discharge committee in line with the criteria laid out in the criteria for admission to special care and guidance applying for a placement in special care, 2012, that a child should be placed in special care and the time of the placement or if this period relates to the time period between the High Court granting a special care order under the exercise of its inherent jurisdiction and the child being placed in special care. (Question 31962/14 asked on 16 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy James Reilly): Special Care involves the detention of a child for his or her own welfare and protection in a Special Care Unit (SCU) on order of the High Court. SCU’s differ from ordinary residential care in that the units offer higher staff ratios, on-site education as well as specialised input such as psychology and child psychiatric services. The child is not detained as a result of criminal offences, but is placed on foot of a High Court Orde...

858. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of children in care with a disability; and the number of these children who have an allocated social worker. (Question 28993/14 asked on 08 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 858 to 860, inclusive, together.
The Child and Family Agency compiles monthly performance reports which include statistics in relation to children in care. These reports are published on the Agency’s website. At the end of December 2013 there were 6,462 children in care. Of these 92% (number 5,935) had an allocated Social Worker and 87% (number 5,648) had a written care plan. The latest report av...

859. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of children in care with an allocated social worker by year end in 2013; and the present number of children in care with an allocated social worker. (Question 28994/14 asked on 08 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 858 to 860, inclusive, together.
The Child and Family Agency compiles monthly performance reports which include statistics in relation to children in care. These reports are published on the Agency’s website. At the end of December 2013 there were 6,462 children in care. Of these 92% (number 5,935) had an allocated Social Worker and 87% (number 5,648) had a written care plan. The latest report av...

860. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the current number of children in care with a statutory care plan; and the number of children by year end in 2013 who had a statutory care plan. (Question 28995/14 asked on 08 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I propose to take Questions Nos. 858 to 860, inclusive, together.
The Child and Family Agency compiles monthly performance reports which include statistics in relation to children in care. These reports are published on the Agency’s website. At the end of December 2013 there were 6,462 children in care. Of these 92% (number 5,935) had an allocated Social Worker and 87% (number 5,648) had a written care plan. The latest report av...

626. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if the Crannóg Nua high-support unit has ceased operations; and if it is currently being refurbished with a view to it being used to provide special care places next year. (Question 27954/14 asked on 01 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

...

646. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs further to Parliamentary Question No. 944 of 25 March 2014, if figures are available on the number of children who went missing while in the care of the State in the first six months of 2014. (Question 28427/14 asked on 01 Jul 2014 - Children in Care)

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Charles Flanagan): I have requested the information from the Child and Family Agency and I will revert to the Deputy when this information is to hand.
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