Tuesday 25 September 2018

Ireland must change our treatment of asylum seekers

Aodhan O Riordain
Aodhan O Riordain

EVERY now and then a politician says something which is of real substance. Forget publicity stunts like "inspecting" US planes in Shannon for arms or flag waving protests in the Dail Chamber.

I am referring to the life altering statement this week by newly appointed Minister of State at the Department of Justice Aodhan O'Riordain that it is a "priority" of the Government under the revised programme to reform the Direct Provision System for asylum seekers in Ireland.

As a former Minister of State with responsibility for Human Rights I have long been critical of the treatment of refugees and asylum seekers by successive Irish governments, including that of which I was a part. In the late nineties, faced with a significant "influx" in the numbers seeking asylum in Ireland the Department of Justice was in crisis defence mode.

Please sign in or register with Independent.ie for free access to Opinions.

Sign In

Today's news headlines, directly to your inbox every morning.

Don't Miss