Dóchas, the Irish Association of Non Governmental Development Organisations, in conjunction with Irish NGOs CORI (Conference of Religious in Ireland), Crosscare Migrant and Refugee Project, European Network against Racism (ENAR) Ireland, Immigrant Council of Ireland, Irish Refugee Council, Mercy International Association, Migrant Rights Centre Ireland, and Peter McVerry Trust, has issued the following letter calling for immediate action on the international refugee crisis:
Ireland is failing to adequately respond to the biggest refugee crisis since World War II
This is an extraordinary situation and it is unacceptable that the Irish Government has not provided a clear statement of leadership, when Irish people are calling for action.
Without compassionate and courageous action and leadership, more lives will be lost, more families will be destroyed and the bodies of more children will wash up on European shores.
Ahead of the EU Foreign Affairs Council Meeting on Monday 7th September and the extraordinary EU Justice and Home Affairs meeting on the 14th September, we, the undersigned organisations, are calling on the Irish Government to take the following immediate steps:
1. Show leadership as demanded by the Irish public and be a strong voice for refugees and migrants at a European level and advocate for safe and legal access to Europe for all those seeking protection.
2. Recall the Dáil immediately to agree a firm plan of action on how Ireland intends to respond to the needs of refugees seeking protection in Europe ahead of the forthcoming extraordinary EU Justice and Home Affairs meeting on the 14th September. The opportunity can also be taken to address the housing crisis.
3. Significantly increase the numbers of people seeking protection that Ireland will welcome. Accelerate the processes of relocation and resettlement, and expand legal channels of migration including family reunification in Ireland and across the European Union.
4. Suspend the return mechanism in the Dublin Regulation in Ireland and call on the European Union Member States to do the same.
- Edel McGinley, Migrant Rights Centre Ireland (MRCI) Director 087 748 5695
- Sue Conlan, Irish Refugee Council (IRC) CEO 085 803 0114
- Jim Clarken, Oxfam Ireland CEO 087 235 8923
- Eamonn Meehan, Trócaire Executive Director 086 232 6228
- Aoife Murphy, MRCI Communications 086 368 7901