She went further to say that, “a key area of concern for AkiDwA has been the mental wellbeing of parents within the asylum system. It would appear to us that the longer they are left in a prolonged state of uncertainty the most likely they are to fall into depression. Depression among African parents, while very much hidden from society, is very prevalent within the community. This of course impacts on the level of care given to children.”
“AkiDwA now feels that a closer examination of the reasons that African children are taken into state care is needed. An open conversation between agencies and stakeholders is also needed. While not wishing to pre-empt the results of any such examination, AkiDwA believes that plans for culturally appropriate timely interventions for parents and children in the asylum system together with a speeding up of the asylum process will be one of the most effective means of addressing the current issues.
One error in Dr. Coulter’s report according to Salome “is the assertion that African families are over 20 times more likely to be involved in child care proceedings. This figure is based on an estimate of approximately 22,524 Africans in Ireland, or almost 0.5% of the population. However the CSO’s 2011 census of population put the population of Africans at 41,642 or 0.91% of the total population. Thus it would be more accurate to say that African families are 12 to 13 times more likely to be involved in child care proceedings. Despite this lower likelihood than the figure reported, it is still an unacceptably high statistic, a very real cause for concern and an issue that demands a response.”