The Truth about the Irish Refugee Protection Programme
It is widely reported by the Media that the people arriving under the Irish Refugee Protection Programme are .. quote.. "Refugees" , however , information released by the government show that the vast majority DO NOT have refugee status when they arrive in Ireland and are coming as part of the EU's migrant relocation programme .
It was agreed at the time that a starting figure of 120,000 Migrants from Italy , Greece and Hungary would be dispersed .
On 10 September 2015 , in response to the EU Commission's plan , the Irish Government via Minister for Justice Francis Fitzgerald established the ‘Irish Refugee Protection Programme’ (IRPP) agreeing to take an initial 4,000 migrants over a two year period .
Simon Coveney later boasted the figure would be 12,000 - " by the time they bring their family members to live here " .
The IRPP takes two kinds of migrants into Ireland , Migrants given to them by the UN refugee agency in D4 (UNHCR) and Migrants given to them by the EU .
The UNHCR migrants are declared as refugees 'prior' to landing in Ireland . They come as part of a resettlement programme agreed between the Irish Government and the UN from camps in Lebanon and are classed as programme refugees under Section 59 of the International Protection Act, 2015 .
The EU migrants are NOT REFUGEES and Do not have any such refugee status when they arrive in Ireland .
They are Migrants given to us under the EU's Migrant relocation programme (Council Decisions EU/2015/1523 and EU/2015/1601) .
On arriving in Ireland , they apply for asylum (refugee status) like any other asylum seeker . By the end of 2017 the government had expected to have taken 2,622 migrants under this relocation scheme from countries Greece and Italy .
Below : December 2016. Minister Francis Fitzgerald and Minister Katherine Zappone went to Greece and met everyone involved with re-locating migrants to Ireland . They met with Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras, the Minister for Migration, Ioannis Mouzalas, the Minister of Interior, Panos Skourletis , senior Greek officials, UNHCR, UNICEF, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), the European Asylum Support Office (EASO), MSF, Oxfam and a range of Greek NGO bodies involved in the migration crisis. They also visited two migrant camps in Athens, Eleonas and Skaramangas .
Below Francis Fitzgerald and Katherine Zappone talk Migrants with Greek Minister
Under the Irish Refugee Protection Programme it was agreed to establish Emergency Reception and Orientation Centres (EROCs) . Tenders were invited from Hotel Owners and Property owners to provide emergency 'full board' treatment for the Migrants
The IRPP is now in the process of establishing Emergency Reception and Orientation Centres (EROCs) and is seeking expressions of interest from persons,companies and organisations interested in makingcommercial offers for accommodation and associated services.
premises should be capable of housing at least 70 persons at a time in single, shared or family type rooms and should include a range of specified facilities. The IRPP is open to offers which provideself-catering and/or full board. Expressions of interest should also include details of associated services such as local or nearby access to shops, schools, hospital and other medical services, sports and recreational facilities.
Hotels that are currently being used for this purpose include the Abbeyfield Four Star Hotel in Roscommon , the Hazel Hotel in Monasterevin Co. Kildare and Clonea Strand Hotel Dungarvan, Co. Waterford .
The Shannon Key West Hotel in Rooskey , is the latest addition to the portfolio .
The Abbeyfield Hotel boasts 70 luxurious bedrooms, state of the art Conference facilities, the inspired Oscars Restaurant, spacious and inviting Hyde Bar where you can enjoy carvery lunch daily. The superb Leisure Centre and the Gaea Spa where you will be pampered by our highly professional team
David Stanton , Minister of State at the Department of Justice announced that € 20,000,000 has been set aside within his department alone for the programme in 2017 and that figure is expected to grow .
David Stanton , Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality
The cost of the programme is spread across many government departments and state agencies and cannot be calculated without significantly impacting on resources in those Departments.
Within my own Department the costs of the programme are spread across several different areas including the Irish Refugee Protection Programme Office, the Office for the Promotion of Migrant Integration, the International Protection Office and the Reception and Integration Agency - many of which cover a wide range of activities beyond those specifically related to the IRPP.
While it would be difficult to produce a detailed breakdown of funding across all Justice areas involved in the programme without disproportionately impacting on staff resources, I understand that the total funding for those aspects of the Programme being operated within my Department is in the region of €20 million.
It is expected that the pace of the programme will continue to increase during 2017. Accordingly the amount of funding and resources allocated to the various areas involved in its implementation will be kept under regular review.
Meanwhile it has been announced that only 35% of deportation orders were executed in 2016 .
There were 1195 Deportation Orders signed in 2016 .
Only 428 persons were deported (35%) and the flight costs for those deportations was €698,814.28.
The top 5 countries for deportation by nationality in 2016 were:
(2) China (incl. Hong Kong)
(5) Albania and South Africa