Scout abuse allegations: Cork file handed over to Tusla

Scout abuse allegations: Cork file handed over to Tusla
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A FILE on alleged abuse in scouting in Cork has been handed over to Tusla in recent weeks.

It is understood the file relates to accusations by a single victim about abuse by one man.

The information was provided to the Evening Echo following the release of details yesterday about allegations of abuse in Scouting Ireland in the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s.

Minister Katherine Zappone at the Joint Committee Children and Youth Affairs on Governance issues in Scouting Ireland.
Minister Katherine Zappone at the Joint Committee Children and Youth Affairs on Governance issues in Scouting Ireland.

The Joint Oireachtas Committee on Children and Youth Affairs was told by the Minister for Children, Katherine Zappone, that a review of historical abuse allegations in Scouting Ireland by safeguarding children expert Ian Elliot has so far shown that there were 71 alleged abusers and 108 victims.

Mr Elliot has warned that the number of “deeply distressing” cases of sexual abuse uncovered in Scouting Ireland will increase.

The Cork victim at the centre of the recent file sent to Tusla is a male.

The man told the Evening Echo that he felt he had nowhere to turn to when he was being abused in the 1960s and 1970s. He added: “I never told anyone at the time, out of fear.”

Ian Elliot was engaged by Scouting Ireland to review past child protection files. He told the Oireachtas committee yesterday that there were 14 alleged perpetrators nationwide who had multiple victims.

A garda spokesman said there are no active investigations in the Cork area arising out of the Scouting Ireland review of cases by Mr Elliot. However, nationally, a number of reports have been made to gardaí and also to Tusla.

Mr Elliot’s review is continuing and he expects the number of victims to increase.

Aisling Kelly, chairperson of Scouting Ireland, said: “It is clear from Mr Elliott’s work that there is evidence of past abuse emerging from the former organisations that merged to form Scouting Ireland some 16 years ago, and neither the offenders nor the victims were always dealt with appropriately.

“We are deeply sorry for the hurt that has been caused by the actions of some past members of Scouting Ireland and its legacy organisations.”

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