For Immediate Release
28 Friday 2014
Urgent Action Needed in Response to Special Rapporteur on Child Protection Report
The Children’s Rights Alliance warmly welcomes the release of the Seventh Report of the Special Rapporteur on Child Protection, Dr Geoffrey Shannon.
Tanya Ward, Chief Executive of the Children’s Rights Alliance said today:
“Dr Shannon’s report is a wakeup call for Government to urgently review the 1991 Child Care Act which is the bedrock of our child protection system. The legislation is over 20 years old and the Courts don’t have the powers they need to keep children safe. The Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Dr James Reilly TD, is well placed to commission a review and to reform this area.”
“The internet is a new frontier in child protection and Dr Shannon shows how our laws have not kept pace with technological advances. This generation of children are in danger of online grooming and Dr Shannon is calling for new laws. For this reason the new Heads of the Sexual Offences Bill published yesterday by Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald TD, is very welcome. Ireland has yet to ratify the Lanzarote Convention or the Budapest Convention focusing on Cybercrime - an essential next step.”
“Dr Shannon highlights the real danger of children being trafficked into the country for forced marriages and is calling on Government to combat this.”
“The report also addresses health concerns for children and recommends restrictions on the advertising of unhealthy foods to children as well as the banning advertising of baby formula.”
The Children’s Rights Alliance is calling for urgent action and for the Special Rapporteur’s report to be fully debated in both Houses of the Oireachtas.
For comment by Tanya Ward, contact Julie Ahern in the Children’s Rights Alliance on: 01 662 9400 or Mob: 087 653 1069.