Newly regularised need help to move out of direct provision
2016-11-15 10:54:01 -
Immigration
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By Chinedu Onyejelem

Some recently regularised immigrants have been threatened with eviction from direct provision centres if they do not move into private accommodation, Sinn Féin’s spokesperson on housing has claimed.

Dublin Mid-West TD Eoin Ó Broin also asked the Minister of Justice Frances Fitzgerald in a recent Dáil question if she was aware of “very real difficulties these persons are having” in finding places to live in the private rental sector.

However, in the department’s response, Minister of State David Stanton refuted Deputy Ó Broin’s assertion. 

“The Reception and Integration Agency [RIA] has never threatened to evict any persons from its accommodation centres who have been granted leave to remain or any other form of status,” he said, adding that the agency and its centre managers work with the Community Welfare Service, Citizens Information and local authorities operating Housing Assistance Payments to “link wiith such persons in accessing appropriate supports and services” in finding and securing private accommodation.

Currently around 500 individuals with different residency status are living in direct provision, and such persons are not “ordinarily entitled to the accommodation supports,” the minister said.

“Notwithstanding this fact, the RIA have always continued to provide such persons with continued accommodation until they secure their own private accommodation.”

While promising that Justice, through the RIA, would continue to speedily “transition persons granted status out of the system”, Minister Stanton acknowledged that the RIA is “particularly mindful of the reality of the housing situation in the State”.

Meanwhile, Deputy Ó Broin has urged all ministers with responsibilities in the area to provide more support for the hundreds in direct provision with Stamp 4 residency to move into private housing.

“People who spend time in direct provision face additional barriers to accessing rented accommodation, and [Housing] Minister Simon Coveney must do more to ensure that those who have successfully gotten their status aren’t placed at greater risk of homelessness due to a lack of adequate cultural support, advice and interpretation services,” he said.

“The Minister for Social Protection [Leo Varadkar] must also ensure that people who have obtained their status receive their full jobseekers’ allowance payment, rather than the €19.50 paid to them in direct provision, so that they can save for a deposit.”
TAGS : Immigration Eviction Direct provision centres Deputy O Broin RIA
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