Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Questions (244)

Fiona O'Loughlin

Question:

244. Deputy Fiona O'Loughlin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number, location, capacity and occupancy of all temporary direct provision centres; the details of the contracts in place for each; if he is satisfied that adequate facilities are provided; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [51945/18]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

The Reception and Integration Agency of my Department has been encountering significant upward pressure on its accommodation portfolio over the last year or so. This pressure has increased further in the last number of months with an increase in the numbers of persons claiming international protection and a growth in the percentage of protection applicants who require assistance with accommodation.

In order to ensure that the State can continue to provide accommodation for all protection applicants and continue to comply with the EU Reception Directive which was transposed into Irish law in June of this year, RIA has, since September, arranged for the provision of emergency beds where the mainstream accommodation centres were at capacity. RIA is also increasing the capacity of the mainstream system by opening new centres in Kenmare, and Wicklow and in the very near future in Moville and Roosky.

As a result of this increased demand, my Department has had to use  emergency beds on a temporary basis. Given that the accommodation is utilised on a temporary basis there is no set contract in place with each provider.

As of Sunday 9th December, there were three separate hotels being used in this manner and the following table shows the name and utilisation of each hotel.

Name 

Occupancy 

Dún na Rí, Kingscourt

33

Lisanisk House, Monaghan

50

Treacy's Hotel, Monaghan

116

Persons accommodated there are provided with full board accommodation. SafetyNet, on behalf of the HSE, have offered medical screening to all residents and RIA are liaising with the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection to assist in the process of linking residents with local Social Welfare officers. Staff from RIA have also arranged to meet with residents in these accommodation settings to address any concerns they may have.

It is our intention that persons will be accommodated here for as short a time as possible prior to being transferred to a contracted accommodation centre and hence the opening of new accommodation centres mentioned above.