224 Newly Arrived Asylum Applicants Sleeping on Streets: Migration Policy is Not Working

The State stopped offering accommodation 24 January to newly arriving adult asylum seekers presenting without children. 224 international protection applicants were living without state provided accommodation on Tuesday evening.
These men were given a once off €25 Dunnes Gift Card and have no other entitlements.
The Department of Social Protection has confirmed to RTE News that these asylum seekers are ineligible for the weekly allowance of €38.80 per week, paid to those in Direct Provision Accommodation.
Last month Minister Roderic O’Gorman, said that policy of not offering accommodation to all new arrivals was due to a nationwide shortage of accommodation and this policy would exist until mid February. This date has passed and it is now looking that this policy has by stealth evolved into being of an indefinite duration.
RTE News spoke to a number of men and needless to say their plight is beyond shocking and is a direct consequence of the government’s failed policy on migration.
Throughout last year government ministers repeatedly said there would be no controls put on migration and promised that resources would be available to accommodate all newly arriving asylum seekers and refugees.
Last June Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien played the racist card when he told Deputy Carol Nolan that she was “a threat to social cohesion” when she asked if the government was going to cap the number of migrants entering the country.
“I am conscious that this is a difficult and sensitive issue and that we must tread carefully here if we’re to avoid blame being targeted at those who least deserve it, but I’m also absolutely convinced that if we do not learn to find some way of exploring in a grown up, pragmatic and constructive way the links between unsustainable levels of inward migration or asylum into this State and housing then we are never going to find a meaningful solution to what is already an overwhelming crisis,” she said.
The minister responded: “We will not bring forward any caps in that regard. Our housing response is in addition to Housing for All. There is no blurring of the lines here.”
Deputy Nolan said: “Ireland’s capacity to provide even the bare minimum of emergency accommodation and shelter to its own citizens and those genuinely fleeing war is being severely undermined.
We can no longer bury our heads in the sand when it comes to these issues.
“Our political system must find a way of talking maturely and openly about these issues and without fear.”
She went on to say: “You are aware that in May the Government was warned that the arrival of tens of thousands of refugees posed a risk to social cohesion and integration particularly among deprived communities, that risk will be massively increased and will continue to grow and become widespread unless we seek to ensure that our barely functioning immigration system is brought under control.”
O’Brien said Deputy Nolan was walking a very fine line. “What you’re calling for effectively is a cap on immigration and a cap on asylum into this country”.
“Let’s be clear, that’s what you’re calling for. We will not support that, we will not support a cap on Ukrainians coming in here who are fleeing a war. Most parties support that approach with the exception of you. Does it provide challenges? Of course it does. Do the Irish people realise that? Yes, of course they do.”
The situation today is a foretaste of what is to come.
Many of those in the hospitality industry who are providing accommodation have not renewed their contracts which are due to expire in a few weeks.
Providing accommodation for those who are being forced out of hotels and B&Bs in March in addition to the new arrivals could result in several hundred or more forced to sleep rough on the streets of the capital which will compound the homeless crisis that preceded the migration crisis. It now appears that the two crises are beginning to merge and evolve into a single super crisis.
Perhaps it is time to declare a national emergency on the issue of migration given that it will require a multi pronged approach to tackle it.
It is possible that there are some people wishing to return to their country of origin but don’t have the means to do so.
The state could provide free flights and a once off monetary grant to the people who would like to return home to their country of origin. This will not solve the crisis but it may alleviate it somewhat
At the heart of this crisis is the war in Ukraine and other parts of the world like Syria. This crisis will remain as long as there is war to drive up the profits of shareholders in the weapons industry.
The solution to the refugee crisis is peace, and to that end, Peter Dooley- is one of the organisers of the march for peace and neutrality taking place on Saturday at 1 pm at the Spire in O’Connell Street, Dublin. You can view his interview with Dr Finbar Markey M-Compass Media here…