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Monday 27 January 2020

Gilmore describes creche mistreatment allegations as “every parent’s worst nightmare”.

Michael Brennan Deputy Political Editor

Tanaiste Eamon Gilmore has described the allegations of mistreatment of children in certain creches as “every parent’s worst nightmare”.

It came after it emerged that a childcare worker has been fired and five others suspended amid allegations that children were mishandled and subjected to poor-quality care at three creches in Dublin.

Mr Gilmore said that every parent who dropped off their child at a childcare facility deserved to have them looked after property.

“These allegations tap into every parent’s worst nightmare. As a Government, we are deeply concerned about these reports,” he said.

At Leaders’ Questions in the Dail, Mr Gilmore confirmed that the Gardai and the HSE were investigating the allegations – which arose after video footage was shot by the RTE Investigations Unit for an expose on care standards in creches.

Mr Gilmore said that there had been over 2,600 inspections of childcare facilities by the HSE in the past two years.

“I think basically what we need is to have is that parents are assured that their children are safe.

But Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin said consideration should be given to getting the Health Information and Quality Authority (HIQA) involved in the inspections of creches due to its “extremely high quality record” in other areas.

“This is a very significant wake up call in the context of the revelations we’ve heard,” he said.

Meanwhile, Sinn Fein TD Jonathan O’Brien raised the issue of the treatment of people at risk of suicide.

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