Caranua Review - What are we doing to get it done?

An inexcusable delay

Today, the 9th of June 2017, in what is our third communication with the Minister of Education and Skills, since May, Right of Place Second Chance have again requested clarification on the proposed Terms of Reference for the review of Caranua.

There has already been an inexcusable delay in this review of nearly two years and once again a delay of at least THREE months since the closing date of applications and expressions to the review were sought and provided.

Watching and reading the cross party calls on the Minister in Dail Eireann to publish the Terms of Reference of the review of Caranua, coupled with our ongoing clarification and appeals to the Minister to urgently publish the Terms;  its not hard to understand and see why Survivors are angry, upset, dismayed and feeling ignored.

There has been a large number of Survivors who have said to me - what are you doing about Caranua and its a fair and valid question. People lean on us to support them as individuals by supporting their individual needs and if an organisation is having a big impact upon their life (both positive and negative) it is our duty to ensure they are held to the highest standards.

Thats why im writing this piece. To let you know that Right of Place Second Chance are working for those who contact us looking for support and help. We are constantly in contact to try and review Caranua Services and to ensure this is done in a transparent, efficient and comprehensive manner.

If the Minister continues to ignore his peers, across all party divides in the Dáil - continue to ignore RIght of Place Second Chance, Irelands largest organisation supporting Survivors of Institutional Abuse he will leave another legacy on some of the most vulnerable of our countries citizens that is both negative, hurtful and utterly unacceptable

This is too big an issue to allow slide any longer and we respectfully request immediate publication of the Terms of Reference so that we can see the scope and extent of the review of Caranua and respond accordingly.

So to finalise - we are in constant contact with the Minister to get this review of Caranua in place. We are working towards hilighting the inexcusable delay in the Terms publication and re-iterate, it is too important an issue to not have an expedited response.

Once again, our submission to the Terms of Reference and what we have called on the Minister to review, is outlined below;

  •  Timeline for the findings of the review

One of the biggest concerns for ROP/SC is the lack of a date as to when the review will come back with its findings. We find the existing delay (nearly two years later) inexcusable and therefore urge the Terms of Reference to include a date for findings, so that this process is not delayed any longer.

  •    To include Dependents and those who were in an institution but never received redress

We call on the Minister to review these two groups to be included specifically. The inter-generational effects of Institutional Abuse are well documented and the idea that those most vulnerable who couldn’t apply for redress are excluded is not acceptable. Rather than spending time deciding what the “widening eligibility” should be, we argue time should be spent reviewing how these groups can apply and not what types of groups can apply.

  •    Review waiting times of receiving support from Caranua

The current waiting times for existing applicants and new applications is not acceptable. We call on the review to investigate these times and make findings on a maximum time frame allowable for applications, both new and existing so that there is clear accountability.

  •   Review the reason & right to introduce a cap on services

To review whether the introduction of a cap has improved the Survivors experience and where in the Residential Institutions Statutory Fund Act this decision was taken from. To investigate why Priority was given to new applicants, despite identified medical and housing needs of existing Applicants still being presented but not being processed.

  •   Review any underspend and set out how this is proposed to be spent

One of the biggest fears of Survivors is that this fund, if an underspend is likely, will be transferred to assist in the completion of the new National Childrens Hospital. Resulting it is appropriate to alleviate concerns if an underspend is indicated, that this will continue to go towards the needs of applicants and not transferred to any other area.

  •  Review the work being done for the closure of Caranua

It is important that the review investigates what work is being carried out in relation to the legislation that defines “enhancing existing services”. ROP/SC worries that the enhanced services some Survivors have experienced will be removed without any work being done to sustain this into the future, when the funding has been expended.

  •   The Reviews findings must be published and the evidence on which these are based.

The reviews findings must be published so that Survivors can have accountability and transparency into the work carried out by the Review itself. It is also imperative that any findings are identifiable with which evidence it used to reach its conclusion.

Ultimately, we expect throughout this process that existing information, data, reports, state funded Service Providers (Survivors specific organisations) and other agencies should be consulted to ensure a robust and well informed review take place.