EVEN the smallest changes in Ireland’s system of direct provision had the potential to “sink the asylum system” in Ireland, a Department of Justice briefing warned.
The report, which was prepared for Minister Charlie Flanagan, warned that working parents could see an increase in childcare costs while Brexit could also have an enormous impact here as any perceived tightening of UK immigration controls could see “illegals” look across the Irish Sea instead.
Working Parents and Childcare Costs
The warnings were contained in a ministerial briefing prepared after a Supreme Court judgment gave asylum seekers living in the direct provision system the right to work.
The briefing also said the state could face a significant childcare bill due to the changes as many asylum seekers within the system were single parents.
Under rules governing direct provision centres, a responsible adult must be available to supervise children at all times.
The briefing said: “Given the high proportion of lone parent families in … accommodation (22%), access to the labour market under any circumstances for this cohort will be difficult without a significant childcare investment.”
‘Any perceived tightening of UK immigration controls
could see “illegals” look across the Irish Sea,’
Brexit Immigration Fallout
The document explained how the common travel area between Ireland and the UK meant it was important that the immigration systems in the two countries were “broadly similar”.
This they said avoided “creating pull factors” which could be taken advantage of by people moving from the UK to Northern Ireland and then into the Republic.
The report estimated that even if only 1% of the UK’s illegal non-EEA nationals were to come to lreland and claim asylum, it would mean an additional 6,000 applicants. “This would literally sink the asylum system putting massive pressures on other State services such as housing, etc.”
It noted “even a perception of a tightening of UK immigration controls would be sufficient for illegals in the UK to explore alternatives. The most obvious option would be to seek to exploit the CTA and come to Ireland.”
The briefing said: “These concerns are not theoretical and we have seen specific situations where major difficulties have arisen, which can often take years to correct and which has major knock on effects for various arms of the State.”
Read the report in full here: