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Written Answers - Appointments to State Boards

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 760 No. 3

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 539.  Deputy Jonathan O’Brien Information on Jonathan O'Brien Zoom on Jonathan O'Brien  asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald  if she will provide a full breakdown by gender of all appointments to State boards since February 2011; the current status of State boards in relation to the percentage of participation of women and men in each one; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [17558/12]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald I would like to inform the Deputy that the position in respect of public bodies under the auspices of my Department is that there are four agencies funded by the Exchequer through my Department’s Vote. These are the Adoption Authority of Ireland, the Family Support Agency, the National Educational [938]Welfare Board and the Ombudsman for Children. With effect from 1 January 2012, I have taken responsibility for the children detention schools as provided in Part 10 of the Children Act 2001. They are funded through my Department’s Vote and I am responsible for the appointment of their board of management.

In relation to the NEWB, I have made four appointments to the Board since my appointment as Minister for Children and Youth Affairs. Mr. Brendan Broderick was appointed based on a nomination of the trade unions and staff associations representing teachers and Mr. Eamonn Flynn was appointed to the NEWB based on a nomination of the Educational Welfare Officers as I am obliged to consult with specified bodies in the process of these appointments. I recently appointed Ruairí Gogan, nominated by the Minister for Justice and Equality and Bob Dowling, nominated by the Minister for Health.

In relation to the FSA, there have been ten members appointed to the Board since my appointment as Minister, namely Sharon Foley, Dick Hickey, Catherine Hazlett, Marie Fenlon, Yvette O’Malley (resigned 10 November, 2011), Liz Chaloner, Nuala Ryan, Imelda Martin, Caroline Murphy and Nollaig Byrne. I have recently appointed Sharon Foley as Chairperson following her meeting with the Joint Oireachtas Committee for Health and Children on 8 March, 2012.

I have made one appointment to the Board of the AAI since my appointment. Imelda Ryan was appointed on 7th February, 2012. In relation to the Board of Management for the Children Detention Schools I have made 11 appointments, effective from 26 March, 2012, namely Joe Horan, Dan Kelleher, Gerard McKiernan, Ursula Kilkelly, Diego Gallagher, Sylda Langford, Colin Fetherston, Pat Rooney, Elizabeth Howard, Barry Rooney and Deirdre Keyes. I appointed Joe Horan as Chairperson after he also met with the Joint Oireachtas Committee on 8 March 2012. There is no Board for the Ombudsman for Children’s Office.

In making my decisions on appointments to Boards, subject to the governing legislation, I consider the most suitable persons for the positions available with due regard to the body or agency in question and its particular responsibilities and I seek to ensure that the appropriate mix of skills and experience is in place to achieve the best result. I have set out in tabular format below the current status of State boards under my remit and the percentage of participation of women and men in each one.

Name of Board Current State Board Membership Men % of total Women % of total
National Educational Welfare Board 10 7 (70%) 3 (30%)
Family Support Agency 9 1 (11%) 8 (89%)
Adoption Authority of Ireland 6 1 (17%) 5 (83%)
Children Detention Schools 11 7 (64%) 4 (36%)


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