No racial profiling at Ireland's borders, insists Justice Minister
2017-11-15 16:20:00 -

Racial profiling has no place in Irish immigration control, the Minister for Justice and Equality has said.


Charles Flanagan was responding to a Dáil question from People Before Profit TD Richard Boyd Barrett on whether he is “satisfied that racial profiling is not taking place” at Irish ports and airports.


“I can assure the deputy that racial profiling is not a feature of Irish immigration control,” said the minister. “There is no selection of persons at passport control. Every [non-Irish national] arriving into the State by sea or air is required to present to an immigration officer and is required to produce a valid identity document or passport.”


Minister Flanagan said passengers who land at Irish ports by air or sea would normally interact with an immigration official on arrival. 


“Most of these contacts are informal or routine requests to establish the purpose of entry to the State and are not necessary to record,” he noted, adding that about 14 million passengers arrived at Dublin Airport in 2016 alone.


“Immigration officers operate in accordance with the relevant law,” the minister continued. “In the case of persons seeking entry to the State who are nationals of an EEA member state or qualifying dependants, this is set out in regulations which transpose the EU Freedom of Movement Directives. For non EEA nationals, the provisions of the Immigration Act 2004 relating to permission to enter and be in the State are applied.


“In relation to Irish nationals, once an immigration officer is satisfied that the person is an Irish citizen, that person is of no further interest from an immigration perspective and is free to continue.”


Minister Flanagan further clarified: “A non-EEA national who is admitted to the State will have his or her passport endorsed with a ‘permission to enter’ stamp indicating purpose and duration of stay. 


“A decision to refuse a non-EEA national permission to enter the State is recorded, and the person concerned provided with a written notice setting out the grounds for the decision.”



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