PRESS STATEMENT Response to Denis Naughten TD’s statement on missing children

Published date: 
11 Aug 2009


Response to Denis Naughten TD’s statement on missing children


By Jillian van Turnhout, Chief Executive

“We are deeply concerned by figures released to Fine Gael’s Immigration & Integration Spokesman, Denis Naughten TD, today, revealing that 29 more children have gone missing from State care since January.  This is shocking and we thank Deputy Naughten for drawing this to our attention.  Children who go missing are extremely vulnerable and at grave risk.

A growing problem in Ireland, child trafficking is a serious human rights abuse that destroys childhoods.   In 2008, nearly 400 separated children came to Ireland; 10% went missing, many of whom are likely to have been trafficked.  Since 2000, a total of 496 children placed in the care of the HSE have gone missing; the vast majority, 434 vulnerable children, remain missing.  

This is why the Children’s Rights Alliance, together with the Irish Refugee Council, is supporting a three-year global campaign between The Body Shop and ECPAT Global, entitled: Stop Sex Trafficking of Children and Young People.  The public can show their support by buying the €5.95 Soft Hands, Kind Heart hand cream, to be launched on Thursday at 11am in the Grafton St Body Shop branch in Dublin (€3.45 of which will go directly to campaigns and prevention projects against child trafficking in Ireland).

We have repeatedly called on the Irish State to acknowledge the existence of child trafficking in Ireland and to put in place measures to tackle trafficking, including the provision of adequate care and accommodation for separated children, and raising their level of care to the same standard as other children in HSE care.  Furthermore, there is an urgent need to provide legal protection, safe accommodation and therapeutic supports for child victims of trafficking.  We can, and must, stop child trafficking, and put an end to this very modern slave trade, here in Ireland.”

Jillian van Turnhout
Chief Executive

Carys Thomas, Communications Director
Children’s Rights Alliance
Tel: (01) 662 9400 / 087 7702845
Note to editors:

  • See Deputy Naughten’s parliamentary question reply here:
  • The Stop Sex Trafficking of Children and Young People three-year global campaign, and accompanying hand cream, will be launched on Thursday 13 August, in the Grafton St Body Shop branch in Dublin.
Children's Rights Alliance