Women in the town of Carrickmacross County Monaghan say they now feel unsafe and afraid walking the streets of Carrickmacross due to large gangs of migrant men congregating around the town .
Last Year , the Department of Justice paid Trenthall Ltd 934k euro to find accommodation for asylum seekers in the Monaghan and Cavan area .
Trenthall which is run by former Monaghan County manager Seamus 'Banty' McEnaney began renting Hotel rooms at Treacys Hotel Carrickmacross where up to 124 asylum seekers are currently residing .
Women in the town say the situation is now unbearable and a
n online petition
for action has gathered almost 1500 signatures in the past 3 days .
Many women have been taking to social media to express their fear and experiences of life in the town .
One woman Nichola Mc Crudden wrote about how she was sexually and physically abused : "I moved to Carrick to build a life for myself. I had taken up a permenant job in a local primary school.I had settled well into Carrick, got myself involved in local inititives, etc. Life was good.Little did I know I would go on a night out with friends in my local town to get physically attacked and sexually abused. I have no problem sharing my story so to make a difference. Why should innocent people suffer in silence and feel un safe in Carrickmacross. Our town is not safe no more. I walk up and down the street to go to work everyday and should i really have to cross the road to avoid all sorts.I am not from Carrick originally but I do have memories of visiting this town. It used to be a lovely place to visit. Today it is a different town altogether.Please everybody put the awareness out there.Thank you Nichola."
Another lady Emma Gollogly wrote "I work late many evenings , walking up to move my car even at 7pm from the car park to in front of the office is often scary lately . Last week one evening I finished at 10:40pm and my car was right outside my door , yet with the gangs sitting on steps next door I did not feel safe . I am also concerned that a young lady was attacked in recent weeks and yet it seems hush hush"
Another lady Maria Murnaghan wrote : "I feel very unsafe even driving up the town the way they all look at you as if we did something wrong . I never go to the bank of Ireland as I feel so intimidated and unsafe with the large groups of them everywhere , especially accross the rd . a young woman was badly attacked on the street , the woman's name does not need to be said but that attack was disgusting, what about my daughters , your children , as a parent it is our job to keep them safe but when you dont feel safe yourself what effect is it having on them , they need to get out of our town , sitting on windowsills , spitting on the ground in front of me , no wonder I cross the street and drive almost everywhere , county councillors stand up and take notice of what we're saying and do something about it"
Another lady Grainne Morgan wrote : "Nothing to do with racism . I moved to carrickmacross almost 10 years ago and loved the town up until recently . Now I wont even go up the town and certainly wont take my kids up the town with the group of males (dont want to say immigrants or refugees as I'll be branded racist) hanging around in gangs . Its very intimidating . I dont feel safe in Carrickmacross anymore . Sad day when you dont feel safe in your own town"
A local man Philip Keegan wrote about the begging in the town: "I’m very concerned with the way our town has changed in such a short space of time . You only have to look outside the courthouse on a Wednesday morning to see that the change is not for the better. The begging on the street is ridiculous also . It’s time to draw a line in the sand before it gets worse"
Figures from the department of Justice show that at the end of June , there were 7,018 asylum seekers being accommodated around Ireland - 6,082 asylum seekers in 39 permanent centres and 936 in emergency accommodation (B&Bs and rented housing) , the figure is forecast to increase to approximately 7,700 people by the end of the year with the total spending on Direct Provision expected to exceed 120 million .
Figures from the International Protection Office show that the top 5 Countries of Origin for Asylum Seekers entering Ireland to the end of June were : 1) Albania 2) Georgia 3) Zimbabwe 4) South Africa 5) Nigeria .