15 May 2007

The Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People, Patricia Lewsley, welcomed Tuesday’s Assembly debates on children’s issues as a clear sign that young people’s needs would remain a priority for members.

MLAs debated motions in the chamber on child and adolescent mental health services and providing for children in care.

“The last assembly was clear in making children a priority,” said Ms Lewsley. “The debates on these issues are for me a clear sign that members want to maintain that commitment and ensure that they will build on those solid foundations.

“In December the transitional assembly passed a motion calling for the recommendations of a review into mental health services and learning disabilities to be put in place and funded properly.

“Today’s motion clearly displays members eagerness to make sure that promise is kept to Northern Ireland’s children and young people.”

The Commissioner said she also welcomed the constructive debate on the Care Matters Strategy – a strategy for children and young people in care.

“My office has welcomed this report and recommended ways it could be enhanced.

“Children in care are often the most vulnerable members of society so we owe them the best opportunities and the best possible conditions to grow, develop and mature within.”

Notes for Editors

  • Further details of the work of the Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People - including our work on mental health issues - can be found here on the NICCY web site