Press Release

Minister Lenihan Launches Child Protection Book: Beyond the Rhetoric

The Minister for Children, Mr. Brian Lenihan T.D. today at 5.30pm (13th March) launched Dr. Helen Buckley´s book Child Protection Work: Beyond the Rhetoric. The Minister welcomed the book as a valuable addition to Irish research in the child protection area.

Dr. Buckley is one of Ireland´s leading experts on Child Protection and Welfare. She is currently a senior lecturer in the Department of Social Studies, Trinity College where she co-ordinates the Postgraduate Diploma in Child Protection and Welfare. Dr. Buckley is also a Senior Research Fellow in the Children´s Research Centre, Trinity College. In addition, she was appointed to the Special Residential Services Board in 2001.

The latest publication by Dr. Buckley focuses on the professional practices of social workers and others employed in child protection. It explores and makes visible the practices in their ´real-life´ environment. The book attempts to challenge the assumptions inherent in the ´official´ version of child protection by going beyond descriptions of child protection in the idealised sense, to show what workers actually ´do´. It argues that far from being a straightforward and easily defined operation, the work of child protection is complex, full of contradictions, ideological dilemmas and dynamic elements ass of which must be considered and addressed by practitioners and managers is their work is to be effective.

The Minister underlined the Government´s commitment to the protection and welfare of children. “To-date a total of €9.47m has been made available on an on-going basis to Health Boards for the implementation of Children First: National Guidelines for the protection and Welfare of Children”, said the Minister.