Eighty-three children among 200 Ukrainian refugees to leave Dublin hotel – The Irish Times
Around 200 Ukrainian refugees at a hotel in west Dublin, including 83 children, have been told by a government agency that they must be resettled to unspecified locations within two weeks.
It is understood that the reason for the move is due to a shortage of accommodation for applicants for international protection.
The manner in which residents of the Ibis Hotel in Clondalkin were notified of their planned resettlement was criticized by Sinn Féin TD Eoin Ó Broin on Tuesday as an ‘unacceptable’ way of dealing with traumatized people who had fled Russia’s war on Ukraine .
Many refugees had achieved “a semblance of normality” over several months and had now been told, without any consultation, that they had to be moved within two weeks, he said. Authorities, he said, should engage with the Ukrainian Civil Society Forum and the South Dublin County Partnership (SDCP) with a view to minimizing disruption to the lives of refugees.
Larry O’Neill, chief executive of the SDCP, which works alongside other organizations to help refugees, mostly women and children, called for them to be allowed to stay until after Christmas, noting that many children are installed in local schools.
“These poor people should not be herded all over the country like animals, they should be consulted and informed of the plans to move them and should not be moved before Christmas. Many children are settled into local schools with books and uniforms, at least let them stay until after a natural break in the school year.
Mr O’Neill said he understood there was a war and a housing crisis, that Ukrainians would be moved to alternative accommodation, that hotel accommodation would be provided to applicants for international protection and that the officials concerned were “doing their best”.
It is important that the Ukrainian refugees already here are treated “in a humane way”, he stressed. In light of this, it “may be time” for the government to revisit its policy and say that the state simply cannot accommodate more Ukrainians, he said.
The DSCP will support the refugees in every way possible regarding the proposed move, he stressed.
All Ukrainian residents of the hotel this week received a letter from the government’s Ukraine Crisis Temporary Accommodation Team (UCTAT) regarding the refugee resettlement project.
Written in Ukrainian and addressed to “beneficiaries of temporary protection” living in the hotel, the letter said the Department for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth was responsible for provide temporary accommodation for temporary protection holders coming here according to the European Union. directive on temporary protection and who have indicated that they need help in obtaining housing.
The beneficiaries have been informed that the accommodation they are currently living in is “temporary” and that the government must relocate them to another accommodation. The letter referred to ‘a huge housing shortage’ and said it was necessary to ensure that newcomers ‘will not be left without a roof over their heads’.
He said that unfortunately on November 28 the government had to relocate residents of the hotel, the department would soon notify residents of alternative accommodation offers and requested that residents note that it is “impossible” to find the same level of housing in the same area where they currently live. It is a challenge facing Irish society today, the letter says.
The government has appointed two non-governmental organisations, the Irish Red Cross and/or Peter McVerry Trust, which would come to the hotel and help find alternative accommodation for the residents, the letter said. Residents, he said, could live in private homes, which was often longer term than hotels or guesthouses and UCTAT staff would help to help refugees transition to residency. independent.
Speaking to The Irish Times on Tuesday afternoon, Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien said he was not aware of the details of the situation of these particular refugees but would discuss it with the Minister for Childhood, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth Roderic O’ Gorman.
The government wants to make sure people are in safe accommodation, which involves, among other things, contracting with hotels, finding more sustainable accommodation and renovating older properties, he stressed. .
No one, he said, had foreseen the magnitude of what the state would face. More than 60,000 Ukrainians have been housed and another 15,000 people fleeing from other war zones are seeking international protection, he noted. “While he thinks the government has done reasonably well since March in dealing with the situation, he said there will always be “challenges in this regard as to how we can adapt and how the State can support “.