Tusla Says Every Single Case Referred To Was Identified, Reviewed & Prioritised

Written 7 days ago by Newsroom

Several Tusla cases involving convicted sex offenders were among files found unassessed in Portlaoise.

A unpublished report, seen by the Irish Times, shows a number of files requiring urgent attention were part of the backlog of hundreds of cases.

The independent review completed by Tulsa in May 2016 shows there were 81 disclosures from adults reporting alleged abuse that had take place when they were children.

Six of those cases related to convicted sex offenders which all required urgent assessment.

In late April 2015, the agency disclosed about 700 “previously unindentified files were discovered in the Laois/Offaly area”.

The review also shows local staff had raised concerns about a growing backlog in the unsourced office as far back as 2013.

Janet Hughes, industrial relations expert, who carried out the report, concluded that many of the case files stored in a filing cabnet required urgent attention.

The review says “the crisis in Laois was part of an organisational failure,not a failure to recognise the existence of a serious problem”.

It’s unclear if anyone has been held to account over the huge backlog.

Jack Power, news reporter with The Irish Times, says an organisational failure to deal with the problem was found – but it doesn’t appear any one has been held to account:

In a statement to Midlands 103, Tusla say there were issues identified in the Midlands area in 2015 and Tusla responded by putting in place a rapid improvement plan, and service improvement plan to address these issues.

As part of the service improvement plan, every single case referred to was identified, reviewed, prioritised, and allocated as appropriate (including retrospective unallocated cases). Thereafter, an adult retrospective team was also established.

In relation to retrospective cases in the area, currently there are *25 open cases, all of which are allocated to a social worker.

Tusla is part of an interagency group that monitors registered sex offenders, led by an Garda Siochana.

Where there is an immediate risk to a child, Tusla provides an immediate protective response.”