The case for reforming the childcare system

There is a widespread belief among childcare professionals that most cases would be better dealt with away from the adversarial court system, writes Susan Mitchell.

Susan Mitchell

Deputy Editor and Health Editor @susmitchellsbp
24th February, 2013
A report on fostering by health watchdog Hiqa found that 35 per cent of children in care in one Dublin area did not have their own link social worker. Photo: Thinkstock

Court proceedings concerning children are part of the legal mainstream. It is now the norm to have four or even five legal teams in court proceedings that involve what is called a care order.

The Health Service Executive (HSE) will have its legal team, while the parents may have one or two legal teams. Then, there may be a court-appointed guardian ad litem (Gal) with another legal team. The role of a Gal, who is...

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