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Written Answers - Children and Young People’s Policy Framework

Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Dáil Éireann Debate
Vol. 765 No. 3

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 106.  Deputy Michael Colreavy Information on Michael Colreavy Zoom on Michael Colreavy  asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald  if she plans to publish a new national youth justice strategy; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [23966/12]

Minister for Children and Youth Affairs (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): Information on Frances Fitzgerald Zoom on Frances Fitzgerald The Deputy will be aware that my Department is developing a new Children and Young Peoples Policy Framework. It will build on Our Children — Their Lives, Ireland’s first children’s strategy which was published in 2000 and will cover the period from 2012 to 2017. The new Policy Framework is being developed in a holistic way to comprehend the continuum of the lifecourse from infancy, through early and middle childhood, to adolescence through to early adulthood. It is intended that it will be the overarching framework under which policy and services for children and young people will be developed and implemented in the State. The policy framework will bring together key policies of relevance to children and young people that are instanced in the Programme for Government including those relating to prevention and early intervention initiatives, early childhood education, breaking the cycle of disadvantage through area based approaches to address child poverty, addressing youth homelessness and aftercare provision, and addressing issues around anti-social behaviour.

I can inform the Deputy that, within the context of this new Policy Framework, it is my intention, in collaboration with the Minister for Justice and Equality, arising from our respective responsibilities under the Children Act 2001, to develop and publish a follow-up National Youth Justice Strategy. Meanwhile, of course, we continue to pursue the youth justice commitments in our programme for government and, as the Deputy will be aware, I have recently made significant announcements with regard to ending the practice of detaining children in St Patrick’s Institution.

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