Interim care order extended for child with disability – 2023vol2#20

A judge in the Dublin District Court extended an interim care order for a child with a disability. The mother was consenting to the application and the hope was that reunification might take place in the future, pending the outcome of a parenting capacity assessment.

The solicitor for the Child and Family Agency (CFA) said the mother was consenting to the application for the extension of the interim care order in relation to the girl. The father was not known. The mother was not from Ireland and was noted to be “quite isolated” with very little support.

The child had recently moved placement and was settling in very well. She had certain medical issues and had recently been seen by a multi-disciplinary team. She was due to be seen by a dietician the following week. A meeting with the disability team was further anticipated to discuss what additional supports might be necessary, and in particular what equipment the child might need to assist her.

The judge said she was “concerned” that the mother was so isolated. She wanted to know whether it was her intention to remain in Ireland. The mother’s solicitor said it was. She had regular access with the child which included twice weekly access visits, as well as weekly video access. The judge said this was a considerable amount of access, which was very positive. She asked whether there was a possibility of reunification.

The CFA solicitor said there was a proposal to prepare a parenting capacity assessment, and the social work team had also reached out to assessors and were awaiting quotes. After this funding could be applied for. She said the ultimate hope was for reunification.

The judge noted the trajectory was going in the right direction. She was satisfied the threshold remained and extended the interim care order for 28 days.