Cahir Day Care Centre ‘flying on one wing’

Cahir Day Care Centre manager, Lil Davis.
A hard working community Day Care Centre is appealing for officialdom to speed up so it can provide a full service.

A hard working community Day Care Centre is appealing for officialdom to speed up so it can provide a full service.

Cahir Day Care Centre is struggling to provide its fantastic services with almost one third of staff positions vacant because of slow Garda Vetting procedures and strict CE scheme regulations.

Lil Davis, Day Care Centre manager, expressed her frustration to The Nationalist saying they are “flying on one wing.”

105 people attend the Day Care Centre in Cahir every week where they take part in activities, have a meal, listen to music and meet friends. The Centre has great support in the community. However government bureaucracy is making life very hard for those working there.

Two years ago there were 81 people attending the centre and Lil had six staff. Now, with 105 attending every week, she has just four. It’s not that she has cut staff but finding people who qualify for the CE scheme work is tricky, and when she does the person has to complete Garda Vetting, which is a very slow process.

“It just doesn’t make a bit of sense,” Lil said of the lack of leeway in regulations. “Nobody here works on a one to one with any client, they work in pairs. Nobody is unsupervised. I have no problem with anyone getting Garda Vetting. It’s right for vulnerable people. But why does it take so long in such a small country? This is the age of technology, what is making it so long. They either have a record or they haven’t. It’s crazy. We are trying to do so much for people, make it as good as we can for them. This is making work more stressful. Bureaucracy is holding us back.”

The six posts at the Day Care Centre are Department of Social Protection CE scheme jobs. To qualify for the scheme a person must be at least 12 months unemployed. Scheme supervisor is Tim Shanahan and when he raised the delay with his superiors it was stressed that there was nothing they could do until Garda Vetting approval was received. One person will retire this month and Lil has also been told they cannot extend this lady’s job even for a few weeks, because of CE scheme rules. The positions were first advertised in October 2013.

Minister Tom Hayes said organisations like this should not be delayed and everything should be done to speed up the Garda Vetting process. He said the Day Care Centre does fantastic work and he had the “height of praise” for the great facility.