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60pc of us 'too wary' to report child abuse

Around six out of 10 adults would feel nervous or unsure about, or would not report, a suspected case of child abuse or neglect.

And the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children survey also showed concerned people in the west of Ireland do not know who to turn to.

It also found that 87pc of people believe not enough information is available about child protection and welfare.

Caroline O'Sullivan, director of services with the ISPCC, said: "In society, we all have a duty of care to children. Children must come first.

"Historically, Ireland has failed to protect many vulnerable children from abuse and neglect.


"We must now develop as a society that does not tolerate the abuse of children and takes action when required to ensure their protection."

The ISPCC survey of 385 residents in the west of Ireland revealed 57pc would feel nervous or unsure about or would not report a suspected case of child abuse or neglect.

Another 83pc believe children's rights are not protected in the same way as adults.

Ms O'Sullivan said volunteers often hear from people worried about children in their extended family or local community but are unsure about who to turn to.

"The main thing is that they speak to someone about these concerns," she added.

The ISPCC support line is open Monday to Friday on 01 676 7960.