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Crèche Inspections

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Deputy Mary Lou McDonald

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Mary Lou McDonald

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Snippet Contents:

I agree with the Minister that the last thing one would want to cause is widespread panic because my children, like those of many others, have had very positive experiences in crèches.
I am gobsmacked at the fact that crèches which clearly have broken the current HSE guidelines and into which there is a Garda and a HSE investigation under way would still be open today. If the Minister wants to give confidence to parents and to stem any panic, she must prove categorically that where abuses and breaches of regulations occur, even before she introduces the reforms of which she speaks, firm action will be taken. Can she explain to us how, in light of all of this evidence, these crèches are still functioning?
The issue of child care in the home was raised. That is a significant point. Why did the Minister cut the childminding advisory posts? There were only a limited number of them across the State. They offered a network, support and training for individuals who care for children in their own homes. It was a bad decision and it might be one that comes back to haunt us.