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Reporting a Concern

Everyone must be alert to the possibility that children with whom they are in contact may be suffering from abuse or neglect. The Diocese and Diocesan Personnel have a responsibility to pass on child safeguarding concerns without delay (within the next working day) to the Civil Authorities (Tusla and An Gardaí) even in cases where Church Personnel are not directly involved.

The guiding principles in regard to the reporting of child abuse or neglect are:

  • The safety of the child is paramount.
  • If you have a concern about a child and are not sure what to do, contact the Diocesan Designated Liaison Person.
  • The Child Protection Recording Form 15 should be completed and forwarded to the Diocesan Designated Liaison Person.
  • Reports should be made without delay to the Diocesan Designated Liaison Person, Tusla and An Gardaí.
  • If a child is in immediate danger contact the Gardaí directly.

Under The Protection of Persons Reporting Child Abuse Act 1998, so long as you report what you believe is true and it is done in good faith you cannot be sued.

Mandated Persons

Mandated persons are people who have contact with children and families and who because of their role, qualifications, training and/or employment, are in a key position to help protect children from harm. For a full list of those who are classified as mandated persons, please see Schedule 2 of the Children First Act.

From the Catholic Church’s perspective, the following are considered to be mandated persons:

  • Member of the clergy (howsoever described) or pastoral care worker (howsoever described) of a church or other religious community;

  • Safeguarding officer, child protection officer or other person (howsoever described) who is employed for the purpose of performing the child welfare and protection function of religious, sporting, recreational, cultural, educational and other bodies and organisations offering services to children.

As a mandated person you have two main obligations under the legislation:

  1. To report the harm to children above a defined threshold to Tusla;

  2. To assist Tusla, if requested, in assessing a concern which has been the subject of a mandated report.

As a mandated person you must report any knowledge, belief or reasonable suspicion that a child has been harmed to TUSLA and to An Garda Síochána from 11th December 2017 onwards. 

Allegations relating to Church personnel (clerics, religious, employees and volunteers) will continue to be processed through the DLP, when a joint report will be made with you as the person who has received the allegation.  Allegations relating to matters outside the Church will need to be processed solely by you; however you can consult with Tusla and/or the DLP to ensure the concern meets the threshold for reporting.

For the National Board’s guidance on mandated persons please follow this link.


Reporting Procedure

The following summarises the procedure to be followed in the reporting of concerns in relation to child safeguarding. If a child safeguarding concern arises;

  • Information relating to the concern must be passed to the Diocesan Designated Liaison Person without delay. See contact numbers below.
  • If the concern is external to the Diocese, the Designated Liaison Person will pass the concern to the Civil Authorities (See Fig.1 Reporting Flow Chart).
  • If the concern is internal, the Designated Liaison Person will ascertain if the grounds for concern are reasonable. (See Fig.2 Reporting Flow Chart).
  • If the concern is reasonable a case file is opened by the Designated Liaison Person and the concern is passed to the Bishop and Civil Authorities without delay (next working day).
  • The Designated Liaison Person will update the person raising the concern (within a reasonable timeframe) on whether the concern has been forwarded or not to the Civil Authorities.
  • If the person raising the concern is unhappy with the Designated Liaison Person’s response they should be encouraged to go to the Civil Authorities directly.
  • In all cases the person raising the concern should be encouraged to report their concern to the Civil Authorities.
  • If you are unsure about any aspect of a safeguarding concern you are encouraged to contact the Designated Liaison Person or Director of Safeguarding directly for advice and support.

Reporting a Concern / Allegation Flow Chart

Contact Information

For a comprehensive list of contact details of relevant statutory authorities for reporting allegations of abuse; go to:

 https://www.safeguarding.ie/index.php/guidance  Appendices and Glossary - APPENDIX D

Killaloe Diocesan Office
Killaloe Diocesan Office, Westbourne, Ennis, Co Clare
Tel +353 65 682 8638
Fax +353 65 684 2538
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Director of Safeguarding and Designated Liaison Person
Cleo Yates
Tel. 065 6828638  Mob. 086 8096027
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Assistant Designated Liaison Person
Fr. Pat Malone
Tel. 086-8096074
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Local Tusla Duty Social Worker Contacts 
 Local Tusla Duty Social workers contacts

Clare Area Tel: 065 6863907

North Tipperary Area Tel. 067 46660

Offaly Area Tel.  057 9370700

Limerick Area Tel.  061 483091

 Outside of these hours in cases of emergency please contact An Garda Síochána

An Garda Síochána Freephone

 An Garda Síochána launched a dedicated phone line for the reporting of child sexual abuse on the 2/3/17.

The phone line number is 1800 555 222.

This confidential Freephone line will be manned on a 24 hour basis, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. This is a Freephone number meaning that there will be no cost to callers from calling this number. 

An Garda Síochána encourages victims of child sexual abuse to report any such incident at the earliest opportunity including those incidents of an historical nature.

In conjunction with the launch of the phone line, An Garda Síochána has also published a guide on the options available to people wishing to report child sexual abuse and sexual crime. This guide is available on the Garda Síochána websiteat:


Local Garda  Stations:

 Ennis Tel: 065 6848111
Ennistymon Tel: 065 7072180
Kilrush Tel: 065 9080550
Killaloe Tel: 061 620540
Henry St, Limerick Tel: 061 212400
Nenagh Tel: 067 50450
Roscrea Tel: 0505 24230
Thurles Tel: 0504 25100
Birr Tel: 057 9169710
For further information on local Garda stations – www.garda.ie

National Office for Safeguarding Children
New House, Saint Patrick’s College, Maynooth, Co. Kildare  
Tel: 01 505 3124, Fax: 01 505 3026