SB & anor -v- Health Service Executive (Direction to Prevent Change of Placement)

JudgeHorgan P.
Judgment Date08 December 2011
Neutral Citation[2011] IEDC 10
Case OutcomeApproved
Date08 December 2011
CourtDistrict Court (Ireland)
[2011] IEDC 10
8 December 2011
1. This matter c ame before the Court on 8 Dece mber 2011 by way of a sect ion 47 Application for Directions as t o the welfare of a 14-
year-old c hild.
2. The Guardian ad Litem (“GAL”) for the Child in essence seeks a direction from the Court t hat t he Child should not be moved by the
HSE from her current residential placement in Residential Unit 1. The mother makes a similar application. T he HSE argues that having
appropriately placed the Child in this residential unit, it is now involved in dispute with the service provider as to the f unding for the
placement and, as t he dispute has bec ome intractable, it has no option but t o move the Child to what it has deemed to be a n
appropriate alternative placement in Residential Unit 2 which is also a private residential placement.
3. The c ircumstances of this ca se are unusual and difficult.
4. The Child suffers from an exacerbated form of PTSD (post traumatic st ress disorder). She came into t he care of the HSE in January
2010 and a full care order was granted t o the HSE in April that ye ar pursuant to sec tion 18 of the Child Care Act, 1991 on the basis
that t he Child was the victim of chronic neglec t and familial sexual abuse.
5. The Child has a spec ific learning difficulty and her overall ability/funct ioning appears to be in the lower range. She has limited
literary skills. She has had multiple moves since coming into HSE care and has had episodes of self-harm and mental health
hospitalisations on two oc casions due to low mood and suicidal ideation. Her level of mental health difficulties fa ll within the high end
of the range of distress requiring an involuntary admission to hospital under section 25 of the Mental Health Ac t 2001. The Child has
been the vic tim of rape following her absconding from her care placements.
6. Her moves bot h in Care and for hospitalisation are set out as follows:
1) 21 January 2010: Family placement with her maternal grandmother with her sister.
2) May 2010: Emergency Foster Care place ment (placed with siste r).
3) June 2010: Long term Private F oster c are Placement (placed w ith sister).
4) June 2010: Respite Placement (placed wit h sister).
5) August 2010: Emergency Foster Care plac ement (placed with siste r).
6) 12 August 2010 to 18 August 2010: Plac ed with her maternal aunt, while waiting for placement.
7) 19 August 2010 to 23 August 2010: Child 1 and sister went to a respite placement again.
8) August 2010 to 27 January 2011: Placed in Fo ster Placement — Child 1 was plac ed separately from sister for the
first time.
9) 27 January 2011 to 7 February 2011: Placed in Respite Placement due t o placement breakdown.
10) 7 February 2011 to 25 April 2011: Placement in Residential Unit 3.
11) 25 April 2011 to 26 April 2011: Placed in respite foste r care.
12) 26 April 2011 to 29 April 2011: Placement in emergency residential unit.
13) 29 April 2011 to 16 May 2011: Place ment with Residential Unit 3.
14) 16 May 2011 to 8 June 2011: Placement in Hospital (presenting issues relating to PT SD).
15) 8 June 2011 to 22 July 2011: Placement in Child and Adolescent Inpatient Unit and det ained under Sect ion 25 of
the Menta l Health Act.
16) 22 July 2011 to date: Plac ement in Residential Unit 1.
7. The Child has had quite a number of moves in a short period of time.
8. The Court has been provided with the f ollowing documents:
(a) Discharge, Summary, and Diagnosis of t he Hospital Registrar and the Consultant Child and Adolescent

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