Three asylum seekers from Palestine arrived Dublin Airport Last Wednesday, they were taken to Co Mayo by taxi, costing taxpayers €500 as government agencies struggle to find housing and transportation for refugees.
The three single men, all in their 20s, arrived on a flight from Italy on Wednesday morning. They said they wanted to apply for asylum and were processed by officers at the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB).
As protocol dictates, the asylum-seekers then formally entered the refugee system, making it the responsibility of International Protection Accommodation Services (IPAS) to arrange for the men’s transport to their new temporary accommodation – either a direct supply center or emergency shelter in a hotel.
Where possible, IPAS places asylum seekers on arrival in temporary accommodation in Ballymun or Swords, north Dublin. However, none was available and the men were instead taken by taxi to an emergency shelter in Claremorris, Co. Mayo. This taxi ride cost €500, of course.
A spokesman for the Department for Children, Equality, Disability, Inclusion and Youth – which oversees IPAS – said the department “does not comment on individual cases”.
While people fleeing the invasion of Ukraine are not entering the country as asylum-seekers, the influx is “straining” the availability of shelter for all those seeking protection.
The three Palestinians had already applied for asylum in an EU country before arriving in Dublin, which means they are legally obliged to remain in the country where their asylum process was initiated.
Those who later apply for asylum in Ireland but have already entered the system in another EU country can be sent back to that country in accordance with the law. However, this process is described by immigration sources as “arduous” and rarely undertaken.
A security source in the immigration sector explained: “It’s asylum shopping. We see a lot of that. People who come to Ireland when they are not allowed to do so if they have applied for asylum elsewhere.
“More should be done to address this, especially when we see so many Ukrainians arriving in dire need of help and shelter.
“Also, because of the pressure on the system, taxis are being used halfway across the country to transport people. That costs the taxpayer a small fortune.”
There is a procedure that Garda National Immigration Bureau officers must follow when people apply for asylum upon arrival in Ireland.
They are briefly questioned and fingerprinted by GNIB officers. Applicants provide details such as their name and the country they are from and why they are seeking international protection.
Gardaí then emails these details to the Reception and Integration Agency, which carries out the asylum process in Ireland on behalf of the Department of Justice. The transport of asylum seekers upon arrival in Ireland is now taken care of by IPAS.
https://www.independent.ie/irish-news/news/taxpayers-hit-for-500-dublin-to-mayo-taxi-fare-for-three-asylum-shoppers-41491413.html Taxpayers demand €500 Dublin to Mayo taxi ride for three ‘asylum buyers’