Last night RTÉ aired ‘Behind Closed Doors’, an undercover exposé of practice at an early learning and care service in Dublin. We understand that the service involved is part of a group of companies trading as ‘Hyde and Seek’, and who own a small number of early learning and care services in Dublin. As part of the RTÉ Investigates series, the programme documented practices that are wholly unacceptable in the care of babies and young children and that seriously contravene national regulations. We now expect that the statutory authorities will take the necessary action to further investigate and address those very distressing breaches.
Kerry Childcare Committee, in an advisory capacity, supports 140 early learning and care services in the county. We are available to our Early Years Services to help them support their staff, parents and children, all of whom will have understandable concerns after viewing this programme. We continue to trust in and support our local services to provide high quality services that lovingly care for and nurture babies and young children. At the same time, we are very conscious of how harrowing that programme was for parents to watch. They trust early learning and care services with the care of the people they love most in the world and to do so requires significant trust. Last night’s programme demonstrated very clear abuse of both that trust and children’s rights. That provider was, however, the exception and not the rule.
We would like to remind anyone that has concerns about a childcare service or about particular individuals within a service to contact Tusla through their Unsolicited Information Office on (061) 461700 or at via their website:
Any parent who has a child protection and welfare concern should report that concern to the local Social Work duty service in the area in which the child lives. This contact can be made in person, by telephone or in writing. Contact information for these social work teams across the country is available on the Tusla website https://www.tusla.ie/children-first/contact-a-social-worker3/
Here at Kerry Childcare Committee we are available to provide support to service providers and parents around all childcare matters. You can reach us on 066 718 1582. Last night was tough viewing so if you have anything at all that you would like advice, support or guidance on, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.