Monday 18 December 2017

Under-resourced system failing children

By Deborah Coleman - Straight Talking

Wicklow People Reporter, Deborah Coleman. Picture Garry O'Neill (No Reproduction Fee)
Wicklow People Reporter, Deborah Coleman. Picture Garry O'Neill (No Reproduction Fee)

There are days when you just sit and wonder what has happened to our world.

How can people get away with inflicting so much pain on others and how have we become so de-sensitised to it?

Today I read an article about a little girl who was 'stamped to death' in Britain.

The red tops revelled in it and in their tasteless way highlighted this poor child's short and horrific existence. Her parents are on trial for her murder, her own parents.

I wish I hadn't read that article as it has haunted me, much like any where violence against children is concerned.

Whatever the outcome of that trial, the outcome for the child cannot be changed.

And in truth, simply avoiding such harrowing reading won't make a jot of difference to the reality.

Perhaps it is parenthood itself that has heightened my sensitivity to such stories, or perhaps it is happening much more frequently and we only learn of cases such as this once it is too late. I cannot understand how anyone could harm an innocent, defenceless child, yet every day it happens, each case worse than the last.

Those who should be protected and cherished are being harmed by those who are supposed to love and care for them.

We are failing the most vulnerable in society, those who have no voice of their own.

We are living in a time with more wealth and education than ever before so how are cases like this one slipping through the net?

Resources - there are simply not enough and when a child is being neglected or abused who steps in and who takes charge?

The aforementioned child had been taken into care on a number of occasions so somebody, somewhere knew that she was at risk.

In this country the overworked social workers we have are drowning under their case loads which are growing daily.

It isn't their fault the system is the way it is.

They should be commended for their dedication because they are the ones who see these tragic cases every single day yet how can they do their jobs properly when most of them have far more work than any one person should have to cope with.

What saddens me the most is that there are children out there right now being mistreated and nobody is there to rescue and comfort them.

Wexford People

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