Press Release…White Paper on Ending Direct Provision

Cultúr Migrant Centre Navan Welcomes the Government White Paper: Next Task Monitoring the implementation of the Proposals.

Cultúr welcomes the proposals in the government’s White Paper on ending Direct Provision published today. This is a special moment for people who have long campaigned for the end of Direct Provision. Cultúr has called for the end of Direct Provision for over 17 years and has campaigned for a model that treats protection applicants with dignity and provides accommodation that is human rights compliant. We welcome the “multi-strand accommodation approach” that has been proposed which commits to building accommodation and using approved housing bodies, moving away from the for-profit accommodation model.

The plan includes mention of a budget to resource community groups to support the implementation and incorporates an independent oversight that includes participation of people with lived experience of Direct Provision and the experience of people in the protection process. The new social welfare payments proposed will also go a long way to address the poverty experienced by people in the protection process. The multi-agency approach proposed will ensure a coordinated effort to support integration is possible from the time of arrival.

Our concern is that the recommendation from the Catherine Day report to start the transition this year is not in the White Paper rather the work will begin in 2022. It is our opinion that in the interim the government should come up with a mechanism that will work on clearing the backlog and reduce the time in processing applications, the median processing time for international protection applications determined in 2020, by the International Protection Office (IPO)was 17.6 months and 12.7 months for prioritised applications.https://www.irishrefugeecouncil.ie/news/delays-continue-to-afflict-irish-protection-process. Without changes in processing of applications we foresee challenges in transitioning to the new model.

We welcome the report and look forward to working with the Department to ensure that people coming to seek international protection in Ireland will experience “integration from day one”. This a monumental day for people in the International Protection System, in particular for the people we work with and support in Mosney Direct Provision Centre and emergency accommodation centres in Co. Meath. The job is not over yet and we will continue to work for the full implementation of the White Paper.

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Media Contact:

Tinu Achioya

Programme Manager Cultúr Migrant Centre Navan

Ph: 086 0111742

Email: [email protected]

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