Thursday, July 26, 2012

Troy doesn’t turn up for his first Health Committee but has time to issue cynical press release

Fine Gael Meath East TD, Regina Doherty, has today (Wednesday) said that Fianna Fáil TD Robert Troy failed to turn up to his first Oireachtas Health Committee as his Party’s Children’s Spokesperson, failed to attend today’s launch of the new National Standards for the Protection and Welfare of Children, and yet found time to issue a press release criticising the Minister for Children’s work.

“I find it hard to believe that Deputy Troy thinks it is appropriate to criticise the Minister for Children, when he can’t even be bothered to attend his first Oireachas Health Committee since he took up Fianna Fáil’s children’s portfolio, or be present at the launch of new standards that will completely change the way children’s services are delivered in this country.

“The Fianna Fáil Party seems to be suffering from some sort of collective amnesia when it comes to the issue of child protection. Can I remind them that during 14 years in Government, they failed to address the huge problems that existed within our child protection services, failed to keep any account of the number of children dying in care, failed to place child protection guidelines on a statutory footing and failed to hold a Children’s Referendum? 

“Fianna Fáil left behind them a legacy in child protection that was so abysmal, this Government almost had to start from scratch. After less than a year and a half in office, we have already delivered significant reforms. By establishing a senior Minister for Children, who sits at the Cabinet table, we have placed child protection on the national agenda.

“We have introduced legislation that forces us all to report the abuse of children, we have extended the remit of the Children’s Ombudsman, we have put an implementation programme in place to deal with the findings of the Child Death Review Group, we are preparing Ireland’s first ever Early Year’s Strategy, we have published the Children’s First Bill and we will hold the Children’s Referendum later this year. 

“These are just some of the reforms that we have already implemented. This work will continue throughout our term in office. 

“If Deputy Troy wants to contribute to this change agenda, he would be better using his time to attend the Health Committee and engage with his fellow legislators, rather than issuing press releases that reflect just the kind of ‘Punch and Judy’ politics his Party leader claims to abhor.”

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