THE GOVERNMENT must act urgently to protect vulnerable children today, said Sinn Fein Dail leader Caoimhghin Caolain who warned that the nightmare of child abuse is not a thing of the past; it is happening every day.
Most of this abuse takes place in the family home. If the services are not in place, the State today will be just as culpable as it was in the past when it conspired with the church to cover up the abuse of children.
Mr Caolain said during the Dails debate on the Ryan report that the woefully inadequate state of our child protection services has been repeatedly exposed.
The HSE knows of cases where children are in grave danger but the services are not in place to make the interventions required.
Joe Behan (Ind, Wicklow) asked was it the case that religious life, with its power and authority, became a refuge for people with predatory sexual instincts, or was it that a life of compulsory celibacy led to the development of such instincts in some of these people? The answer to this question should inform the church authoritys planning to prevent such atrocities ever occurring again.