Diocesan Safeguarding Policy Statement

The Diocese of Cork and Ross recognises and upholds the dignity and rights of all children and is committed to ensuring their safety and well-being.

The Diocese values and encourages the participation of children and young people in the life of the Church, namely in all parish liturgies and in all activities that enhance their spiritual, physical, emotional, intellectual and social development.
The Diocese recognises that while the safeguarding of children is everyone’s
responsibility, all involved in working with children and young people have a special duty of care towards them.

Ráiteas Deoise Chorcaí & Rois fé Chosaint na Leanaí.

Aithníonn agus taobhaíonn Deoise Chorcaí agus Rois le dínit agus cearta gach uile leinbh agus na daoine óga go léir. Seasaimíd go daingean lena gcosaint agus lena leas.
Is mór againn páirtíocht na leanaí agus na daoine óga i liotúirgí na bparóistí agus i ngníomhaíochtaí a chuireann lena bhforbairt i gcúrsaí spriodáltachta, fisiciúlachta, mothaíochta agus sóisialta.
Aithnímíd go bhfuil dualgas ar gach aon duine leanaí agus daoine óga a chosaint agus
go bhfuil dualgas speisialta chúraim ar gach éinne a oibríonn le leanaí.

Diecezjalna deklaracja w sprawie ochrony dzieci.

Diecezja Cork i Ross uznaje i chroni godność i prawa wszystkich dzieci i zobowiązuje się do zapewnienia ich bezpieczeństwa i dobrobytu.
Diecezja ceni i zachęca do udziału dzieci i młodzież w życiu Kościoła, a mianowicie we wszystkich liturgiach parafialnych i wszystkich działaniach, które zwiększają duchowy, fizyczny, emocjonalny, intelektualny i społeczny rozwój.
Diecezja uznaje, że chociaż ochrona dzieci jest obowiązkiem każdego, tak wszyscy zaangażowani w pracę z dziećmi i młodzieżą mają szczególny obowiązek troski o nich.

Ms. Cleo Yates is the Diocesan Director of Child Safeguarding and can be contacted on 021-4301717 or 087-3768599 or on email at She is assisted by Rev. Liam O’Driscoll who can also be contacted on 021-4301717 or 087-3768599 or on email at


Diocesan Child Safeguarding Committee.
In addition to the development of policy and monitoring its implementation, the Diocesan Child Safeguarding Committee ensures the organisation and delivery of training for all Church personell in the Diocese. The Diocese has three qualified trainers who provide ongoing training courses.

Case Management

Cases of suspected or alleged child abuse are managed by the Director of Safeguarding and Diocesan Liaison Person, Ms. Cleo Yates. Advice in such cases is sought from the National Case Management Group, established by the National Board for Safeguarding Children.

Inter Agency Forum.

In 2011, the Diocese established an Inter-Agency forum with the Garda Siochana and TUSLA, designed to improve cooperation between them in the management of allegations of abuse of children.  Regular meetings are held with these agencies.

Parish Audits.
Parish Audits are carried out annually.  This is to ensure that the policies and procedures laid out in the Diocesan Policy document are being implemented in every parish.


The Diocese offers therapeutic assistance and support to people who allege abuse by Church personnel, without prejudice to the truth or otherwise of the allegation.  A number of support persons are available to both victims and perpetrators.

Anonymous Complaints.

From time to time, anonymous complaints are also received.  For the avoidance of doubt, it is the policy of the Diocese that the statutory authorities are notified of such complaints.  However, the statutory authorities and the Diocese can be limited in the actions that are possible arising from anonymous complaints when the identity of the complainant and the alleged victim are not given.  However, all complaints are notified and investigated.

Allegation against a volunteer or leader in a Parish

If any information is brought to the attention of the Diocese of an allegation against a volunteer or leader in a Parish then in the interests of child safeguarding the person concern should be asked by the Parish Priest to temporary step down from any duties in the parish, until the allegation has been investigated by statutory authorities.

If you have a Safeguarding concern and wish to report it directly to the statutory authorities, the contact details are as follows:

H.S.E (TUSLA)                                      

  • North Lee Community Services, Blackpool, Cork.     Tel: 021/492 7000  
  • South Lee Community Services, St. Finbarr’s Hospital, Cork.    Tel: 021/492 3001
  • West Cork Community Services, Skibbereen.    Tel: 028/40447/40456

An Garda Siochana

Gardaí National Protective Services Bureau:  Tel: 01/6663430/01/6663435

Resources for Parishes


Related resources

Pope Benedict’s Letter to Irish Catholics
Pope Benedict’s Pastoral Letter & Cardinal Sean Brady’s welcome address (2010)

Safeguarding Children
Safeguarding Children – Standards and Guidance Document for the Catholic Church in Ireland (2009)

Our Children, Our Church
Child Protection Policies and Procedures for the Catholic Church in Ireland published in December 2005.

Irish Bishops’ Pastoral Letter for Lent 2005: “A Time for Healing”
Deals with the Church’s response to Child Sexual Abuse.

Child Sexual Abuse: Framework for a Church Response – Report Of The Irish Catholic Bishops’ Adisory Commottee On Child Sexual Abuse By Priests And ReligiousPublished in 1996 by Veritas Publications.

Cork and Ross Audit Report_2012

National Board Review of Safeguarding in Cork & Ross

Response to Review recommendations

In March 2012, the National Board for Safeguarding Children in the Catholic Church in Ireland (NBSCCCI) conducted a Review of safeguarding practice in the Diocese of Cork and Ross.  The report on this Review, published in September 2012, contained a number of recommendations towards improving the safeguarding service in the Diocese.

To read these recommendations, see Cork and Ross Audit Report: Cork and Ross Audit Report_2012

The Diocese sent a progress report regarding implementation of these recommendations to the National Board in July 2013. Read that progress reporttogether with a Pastoral Letter issued by Bishop Buckley.

In a reply to Bishop Buckley, dated September 6th 2013, Teresa Devlin, Director of Safeguarding at the National Board wrote:

“I am impressed with the work that is going on to ensure the recommendations are being implemented and more importantly that safeguarding children remains a high priority issue for you and for your diocesan personnel.”

The importance of having policies and procedures in place to guarantee a safe environment for children cannot be over-emphasised. In Cork and Ross, a Plan of Action for the coming years has recently been updated.  This Plan addresses many aspects of safeguarding policy and procedures.

No plan can be acted upon without the enthusiasm and support of those charged with implementing it. The success of this plan will be down to the work of all those responsible for putting it into practice.
To read the Plan in detail, click here.

To read the Audit Compliance Document click here