'scandalous' | 

Asking refugees to leave hotels to make way for tourists is ‘poor reflection’ Dublin TD says

Refugees are at risk of being left on the streets of Ireland while 150,000 homes remain vacant

Paul Murphy TD

Clodagh MeaneySunday World

People Before Profit TD Paul Murphy has said the Government has failed refugees that have come to Ireland for safety.

Describing the Government's lack of planning as "scandalous”, Deputy Murphy said: "Over 100 people now living in tents after the government said last month that won't be happening.”

Deputy Murphy was speaking after the United Nations High Commission for Refugees indicated that hotels accommodating refugees are set to revert back to holiday spots.

But the Dublin TD said that refugees being asked to leave hotels to make way for tourists is a “poor reflection on the people who run this country.”

"There's people in extremely substandard accommodation and of course the homeless crisis in this country continues to get worse," he said.

"150,000 homes vacant in total across the state and we need to be saying to those people, 'you have to use it or lose it'."

Minister for Integration Roderic O’Gorman has said that asylum seekers arriving into Ireland may have to live on the streets as there is a “very real risk” the Government will not be able to accommodate them.

“It’s becoming increasingly difficult to secure new accommodation and particularly, over the next few weeks into the middle of February,” he told RTE News at One.

"It’s difficult to get a line of sight over enough accommodation of what we anticipate will be the number of arrivals when we look back to what we have seen in the last number of months,”

“There is a very real risk, particularly on the international protection side [asylum seekers not from Ukraine], that we won’t be able to accommodate everybody.”

He said that “vulnerable” applicants, such as families with children, will be prioritised and for those who aren’t provided accommodation, the Government will look to provide “contingencies”.

“We will look to provide them with food vouchers, we will look to take their details so we can contact them again once additional accommodation can be secured.”

At present, there are 88 asylum seekers living in tents in Knockalisheen direct provision centre in Co Clare.

The state is currently accommodating over 19,000 International Protection (IP) seekers and 54,000 Ukrainian refugees fleeing Putin’s war.

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