Legalisation that makes the reporting of child abuse mandatory for named professionals, has been publicised in the Rep. of Ireland, today.
The Children’s First Bill 2014 gives legal clarity to teachers, clergy members, Gardaí and medical staff, about reporting any suspicions they have over child abuse and neglect.
Ireland’s, Children’s Minister, Mary Fitzgerald said organisations will face cuts if they do not comply with the new legislation.
Under the new bill, its a legal obligation for the above professions to report their suspicions, if they believe a child is being abused or neglected.
However, some charities have raised concerns that the new legislation doesn’t go far enough, saying heavier sanctions need to be imposed against organisations who don’t comply.
CEO of the ISPCC, Ashley Balbirnie said the organisation was concerned about the list mandated professions, as it doesn’t cover national organisations working with children.
"While so many organisations and services are doing great work and already adhering to best practice, many large service providers including my own organisation, the ISPCC are not explicitly mandated to comply with the protocols set out in the Children First Bill.”
While Maeve Lewis, executive director of One in Four, has welcomed publication of the Bill but says she is disappointed there are no sanctions against those who fail to comply.