Friday 18 January 2019

Disability staff probed after abuse claim

(Stock photo)
(Stock photo)
Eilish O'Regan

Eilish O'Regan

Five staff in a disability centre have been placed on paid leave during an investigation into allegations of abuse, it was confirmed yesterday.

The action was taken at Sunbeam House Services which has centres in Wicklow and south-east Dublin.

The staff were placed on shortly after management was informed of the allegations.

Chief executive Hugh Kane said five staff were on paid leave "at the present time".

The centre involved in the investigation accommodates a number of adults.

He said the service "received allegations raising concerns about potential safeguarding issues" which had been considered by senior staff.

The allegations were also referred to the organisation's internal safeguarding team, some of whom had interviewed the complainant before management informed the gardaí.

All relevant authorities were contacted and the families of the residents informed.

The service is mainly funded by the HSE and receives around €26.6m a year.

Meanwhile, the patient safety watchdog, the Health Information and Quality Authority (Hiqa), published three inspection reports on Sunbeam House centres.

It issued a notice to cancel the registration of one centre and the provider had submitted representation to Hiqa's chief inspector of social services.

The inspection found the provider failed to implement their own plan and residents continued to be adversely hit.

Improvements in meeting the assessed needs of residents were required in a second centre, and in a third, the provider had failed to meet their legal requirements in submitting an accurate and complete application to renew the registration.

Irish Independent

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