Hundreds demand closure of Hyde & Seek creches after undercover probe
The Behind Closed Doors RTE programme revealed children were roughly handled and fire safety rules were breached.
Hundreds of people have signed a petition calling for the creche chain at the centre of a major controversy to be shut down.
An undercover investigation into the standard of care at Hyde & Seek creches revealed how children were roughly handled.
It also showed a series of fire safety breaches at the multimillion-euro family-run business.
The company has four creches across Dublin city catering for children from three months up to 12 years.
The overall picture it painted does not reflect who we are, but there are specific issues we need to address and are addressing quickly Hyde & Seek
The investigation was carried out by the RTE programme Behind Closed Doors.
Undercover footage revealed repeated breaches of regulation, as well as concerns around sleep room conditions.
The documentary has prompted more than 500 people to sign an online petition calling on Tusla, the independent regulator of child services, to close the centres.
It comes after Hyde & Seek confirmed it is seeking an external expert consultant to review the management structures.
In a statement, a spokeswoman for the creche said: “The Primetime programme raised some real issues for us and we will deal with them quickly.
“The overall picture it painted does not reflect who we are, but there are specific issues we need to address and are addressing quickly.
“We will shortly retain an external expert consultant to review our management structure and our service.
Any parent who has a concern in relation to the operation of an early learning and care service should firstly contact their service provider directly to discuss their concerns. #RTEInvestigates @Tusla— Department of Children and Youth Affairs (@DCYAPress) July 24, 2019
“We began seeking to identify such a consultant this week.
“One of the first changes we will make will be the recruitment of a new manager at our Tolka Road creche.
“We know we need to work to rebuild, retain and enhance the trust the parents have in us. We have spoken to many of them in recent days and would urge others with concerns to contact us.”
It went on to say it has taken steps to address some of the issues raised in the documentary, including fire safety concerns.
In a statement, a spokesman for the gardai said: “An Garda Siochana are aware of issues raised by the RTE Primetime programme.
“If any parent or guardian has any concerns in relation to this matter they can contact the gardai at Mountjoy garda station on 01 666 8600 or Pearse Street 01 666900.”