Dáil debates

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Ceisteanna - Questions - Priority Questions

Child and Family Agency

4:20 pm

Photo of Frances FitzgeraldFrances Fitzgerald (Dublin Mid West, Fine Gael) | Oireachtas source

The Government has approved, on my recommendation, the appointment of Ms Norah Gibbons as first chairperson of the board of the agency. In preparation for the formal establishment of the new agency Ms Gibbons will be initially appointed as chairperson of the existing Family Support Agency, one of the constituent bodies to be merged into the child and family agency. In line with the practice established by this Government, Ms Gibbons will be available to appear before the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Health and Children in advance of taking up her position. I wrote to the Chairman of the Committee on 30 April last requesting that he facilitate Ms Gibbon's appearance before the committee in connection with her appointment. I await confirmation of a date for this meeting.

On 2 May, a public advertisement seeking expressions of interest from those interested in being appointed to the board of the Family Support Agency was published on the website of the Public Appointments Service. A notice to this effect has also been posted on my Department's website and on the websites of the National Educational Welfare Board and the Family Support Agency, FSA. The closing date for applications is Thursday, 23 May 2013. The advertisement highlights both the role of the board members within the Family Support Agency's existing statutory functions and the board's planned role in facilitating advance preparations for the organisational establishment of the child and family agency.

Therefore, the selection of board members will have particular regard to the enhanced role being given to this board in overseeing, on an administrative basis, the governance and organisational preparations for the new agency. The number of board members appointed will be in line with section 10(1) of the Family Support Agency Act 2001, which provides for a board of 12 members in total.

Those appointed to the FSA board will have a term of office up to the date of the establishment of the new child and family agency. In the interests of good governance I anticipate that in general a good level of continuity will be maintained between the newly appointed Family Support Agency board and the board of the child and family agency, although it is intended that the latter board shall be smaller in number.


No comments

Log in or join to post a public comment.