Listening to today's New at One on Radio 1 today. The feature was about the number of children who have died whilst in state care for the past ten years. It seems the HSE have one figure (24 deaths) which doesn't add up to other estimates. Minister for Children or whatever his title, Andrews set up a review last March to find out the exact number. A newspaper yesterday reported that the number could be as high as 200, which is just horrific. According to the News at One, so far the HSE hasn't sent one file to the review team set up by Andrews. The assistant director for children and family services of the HSE, Phill Garland was on Morning Ireland and I will now attempt a transcription of what he said in relation to all this:
It is quite clear that we have deficits in our system. It is quite clear that we have inconsistencies in terms of how we do standardised processes. We are moving those issues forward in terms of our [something incomprehensible to me] programs consistency. The ombudsman's report absolutely highlighted the deficits. We need to address those and we are in the process of doing those.
What in the name of all that is wholesome does any of that mean? Mr. Garland should be given an award for his phenomenal, almost Joyce-like ability to communicate and convey absolutely nothing, while still using the English language. My favourite bit is, “it is quite clear that we have inconsistencies in terms of how we do standardised processes.”
In case RTÉ has done the man an injustice, I am going now to listen to his full interview from this morning's Morning Ireland.
You can listen to that here – http://www.rte.ie/podcasts/2010/pc/pod-v-2405102ndhour37m14smorningireland.mp3 – and today's News at One here – http://www.rte.ie/podcasts/2010/pc/pod-v-24051012m39snewsatonea.mp3.