Special rapporteur on child protection Dr Geoffrey Shannon: Sweeping reforms are needed following controversies such as the removal of two Roma children from their homes last year

Scale of proposed reform suggest existing laws are not longer fit for purpose

Legislation was introduced in the 1950s which provided the legal basis to adoption for the first time. Photograph:  Getty Images/Comstock Images

It is almost impossible for some to be adopted

Geoffrey Shannon, chairman of the Adoption Authority, said the changes would give more children a “second chance” at a safe and secure childhood. Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Legal obstacles saw only 17 Irish children adopted from foster care last year

Gordon Jeyes, chief executive of the Child and Family Agency/Tusla, said an additional €45 million was required next year just to keep services at a standstill. Photograph: Alan Betson/The Irish Times

Tusla is struggling to respond to needs of thousands of children at risk of abuse and neglect

Minister of State  Aodhán Ó Ríordáin with a resident at the direct-provision centre at the Montague Hotel in Portlaoise. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan

Refusal of hotel-owner to admit priest on premises highlights power of system over residents’ lives

The number of unaccompanied minors seeking asylum referred to the Child and Family Agency was 120 last year. This compares to 339 in 2008 and 863 in 2002. Photograph: Getty Images

ESRI report finds improvements in care but key information gaps over vulnerable children

Fr Paddy Byrne, Minister Aodhán Ó Ríordáin,  Monsignor John Byrne and Senator John Whelan at the Montague Hotel direct provision centre. Photograph: Lorraine O’Sullivan

Department of Justice says priest’s comments had upset staff at Montague Hotel direct provision centre

A case over alleged breaches of childcare regulations by Giraffe creche in Stepaside was struck out by the Dublin District Court yesterday after a judge ruled the Child and Family Agency did not have legal standing to bring the prosecution.

Judge rules agency does not have legal basis to take action against creche featured in ‘Prime Time’ investigation

Water usage: to use less than the amount at which the State charges kick in will not be easy and will require a complete change of habits.

To pay less than the set cap, you will have to severely curtail your current water usage

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