Analysis: Roderic O’Gorman’s error about number of children missing from state care is a serious matter

The Minister for Children’s claim that only two children were missing from state care was not just wrong - the opposite was true: the majority were still unaccounted for, Daniel Murray writes

O’Gorman's spokesman confirmed that there had been an “error” in his briefing notes before the interview. Picture: Collins

To err is human. But the use of incorrect information by a minister to dispel public concerns on important issues is a serious matter.

This is what appears to have happened when Roderic O’Gorman, the Minister for Children, went on national radio last month to contradict an investigation by the Business Post on the important issue of migrant children missing from state care.

The Business Post reported in July that 15 separated children seeking international protection had gone missing from state care and were still unaccounted for. This information was reported on the basis of data provided by Tusla, the child and family agency, aspart of a special report into major failings in the Irish state’s care of separated children.