Tuesday, 27 January 2004

Questions (746)

Joe Costello

Question:

868 Mr. Costello asked the Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform the reason the immigration and citizen division of his Department at Burgh Quay, Dublin 1, is only contactable on three mornings per week for a total of six hours by members of the public; if the period will be extended, as it frequently takes a considerable period of time to access the telephone lines; if he has established or intends to establish an Oireachtas Members' inquiry line; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1433/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform)

I assume, from the hours specified, that the Deputy is referring to the visa helpline, which is one of four helplines operated in the immigration and citizenship division of my Department. I refer the Deputy to my reply to Question No. 396 of 18 November 2003, in which I addressed that issue comprehensively. I am considering with officials in my Department ways to underpin the quality and efficiency of services provided in light of the resources available.