Road Traffic Offences Data

Questions (779)

Marc MacSharry

Question:

779. Deputy Marc MacSharry asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of convictions for each fixed-charge motoring offence in the past three years; and the number of licences on which penalty points were recorded in each of the past three years in tabular form. [32720/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy is aware, under the provisions of the Courts Service Act 1998, management of the courts is the responsibility of the Courts Service, which is independent in exercising its functions, and this includes the provision of information on the courts system.

I have requested information from the Courts Service in relation to the number of convictions for each fixed charge motoring offence in the past three years and the Courts Service has stated that it is not in a position to provide the data requested by the Deputy.  The Courts Service states that a large number of offences can attract fixed charge penalty notices and has indicated that identifying the number of convictions for each one over the past three years would involve a disproportionate amount of time and work.

The second part of the question is a matter for my colleague, the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport.

Asylum Applications Data

Questions (780)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

780. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current or expected residency status with particular reference to stamp 4 and-or naturalisation in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32727/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

As the Deputy is aware, if an application for asylum or subsidiary protection has been made in the State, for confidentiality reasons it is not the practice to comment on such applications and the applicant or his legal representative should contact either the International Protection Office (IPO) or the International Protection Appeals Tribunal (IPAT) directly, as appropriate.

The IPO may be contacted: by email to info@ipo.gov.ie; by telephone to the IPO Customer Service Centre at 01 6028008 or in writing to Customer Service Centre, International Protection Office, 79-83 Lower Mount Street, Dublin 2. The International Protection Appeals Tribunal may be contacted either: by email to info@protectionappeals.ie; by telephone at 01-4748400 (or Lo-Call 1890 201 458), or in writing to Corporate Services Division, The International Protection Appeals Tribunal, 6-7 Hanover Street East, Dublin D02 W320.

Following the commencement of the International Protection Act 2015 on 31 December 2016, new arrangements for the investigation and determination of applications for international protection (refugee status and subsidiary protection) and cases involving permission to remain in the State have been introduced. Such applications are now processed, as part of a single application procedure, by the International Protection Office (IPO) which has replaced the Office of the Refugee Applications Commissioner (ORAC) from that date. The staff of that Office (the Chief International Protection Officer and International Protection Officers) are independent in the performance of their protection functions.

For your information, on 27 February 2017, the Chief International Protection Officer, following consultation with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), published a statement on the Prioritisation of Applications under the International Protection Act 2015 which is available on the website of the International Protection Office (www.ipo.gov.ie).

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up-to-date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Deportation Orders

Questions (781)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

781. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if the case of a person (details supplied) will be reviewed in view of the change of circumstance from when the original deportation order was made in 2003; if the further information has been considered by the relevant authorities with a view to rejoining his or her spouse who is an Irish citizen; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32728/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the person referred to is the subject of a Deportation Order made on 20 June 2002 and therefore has no entitlement to residency in the State.  

Representations were received on behalf of the person concerned pursuant to Section 3 (11) of the Immigration Act 1999 (as amended), to revoke the Deportation Order.  Following the consideration of those representations, a decision was taken that the Deportation Order should be affirmed and this decision was communicated to the person concerned by registered post dated 9 November 2017. 

It is open to the person concerned to submit further representations requesting that the Deportation Order be revoked, pursuant to Section 3(11) of the Immigration Act 1999 (as amended).  However, I wish to make clear that such an application would require substantial grounds to be successful.  To date no such further representations have been received in this case.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the parliamentary questions process. The Deputy may consider using the email service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy's view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Applications

Questions (782)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

782. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding an application for naturalisation in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32731/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that there is no record of a current application for a certificate of naturalisation from the person referred to by the Deputy.

A previous application was returned in its entirety on 25 July 2018 as it was accompanied by an incomplete statutory declaration form and no application fee or supporting documents.

It is open to any individual to lodge an application for a certificate of naturalisation if and when they are in a position to meet the statutory requirements as prescribed in the Irish Nationality and Citizenship Act 1956, as amended.

Full details of the eligibility criteria and extensive guidelines are available on the INIS website at www.inis.gov.ie  

The granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation is a privilege and an honour which confers certain rights and entitlements not only within the State but also at European Union level and I know the Deputy will appreciate that it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Deportation Orders

Questions (783)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

783. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if updated applications that have been received by way of correspondence from a person (details supplied), which was not previously conveyed to his Department, has now been acknowledged; if the case will be reconsidered on these grounds in view of the fact she is married to an Irish citizen, that is, employed here; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32732/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am informed by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the person concerned is the subject of a Deportation Order signed on 29 September 2017.  This Order requires the person to remove themselves from the State and remain outside the State.  The enforcement of the Deportation Order is a matter for the Garda National Immigration Bureau. 

As previously advised, representations were received from the person concerned, pursuant to the provisions of Section 3(11) of the Immigration Act 1999 (as amended), requesting that the Deportation Order be revoked including information regarding her marriage.  Following the detailed consideration of the information submitted in support of the request, the Deportation Order was affirmed and notified to the person concerned by letter dated 27 November 2018.  There are no outstanding correspondence or applications on file for this applicant.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose.  This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the parliamentary questions process.  The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy's view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Immigration Status

Questions (784)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

784. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current or expected residency status in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32734/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that it would appear the person's presence in the State may be unlawful.  The Deputy will appreciate that, under the relevant provisions of the Immigration Act, 2004, a non-national may not be in the State other than within the terms of a permission from the Minister for Justice and Equality. 

In order to allow for a full examination of the person's circumstances, the person concerned should write to Unit 4, Domestic Residence and Permissions Division, INIS, 13/14 Burgh Quay, Dublin 2 and provide a detailed account and documentary evidence of their personal circumstances since they entered the State. 

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Immigration Status

Questions (785)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

785. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current and or expected residency status in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32735/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that it received a request for permission to remain in the State, on a stamp 4 basis, as the parent of an Irish citizen child on 17 November, 2017. I understand that INIS wrote to the person concerned on 13 December, 2017 in relation to the granting of permission to reside in the State on stamp 4 conditions until 13 December, 2020.

I also understand, however, that it would appear that the person concerned has failed to comply with an obligation to register the permission to reside with their local immigration office.  I am further advised that is open to the person concerned to write to Unit 4, Domestic Residence and Permissions Division, INIS, 13/14 Burgh Quay, Dublin 2 in relation to their failure to register the permission to reside.  It is also open to them to set out the circumstances of their dependent children and INIS will consider the matter in detail.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Applications

Questions (786)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

786. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current or expected residency status in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32736/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the processing of the application for a certificate of naturalisation from the person referred to by the Deputy is ongoing. On completion of the necessary processing the application will be submitted to me for decision as expeditiously as possible. Should further documentation be required it will be requested from the applicant in due course.

The records indicate that the current permission to reside in the State granted to the person concerned expired on 2 July 2019.  It is up to the person concerned to seek permission to remain beyond the expiry of his current permission.  All non-EEA nationals are required to keep their permission to remain in the State up to date at all times, and to have such permission registered.  Failure to do so may adversely affect an application for a certificate of naturalisation. 

As the Deputy will appreciate, the granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation is a privilege and an honour which confers certain rights and entitlements, not only within the State but also at European Union level, and it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process. 

It is recognised that all applicants for citizenship would wish to have a decision on their application without delay. The nature of the naturalisation process is such that, for a broad range of reasons, some cases will take longer than others to process.  In some instances, completing the necessary checks can take a considerable period of time. 

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Eligibility

Questions (787)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

787. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding the determination of eligibility for naturalisation in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32737/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the application for a certificate of naturalisation from the person referred to by the Deputy continues to be processed and will be submitted to me for decision as expeditiously as possible. If further documentation is required it will be requested from the applicant in due course. 

As the Deputy will appreciate, the granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation is a privilege and an honour which confers certain rights and entitlements not only within the State but also at European Union level and it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process.

It is recognised that all applicants for citizenship would wish to have a decision on their application without delay. The nature of the naturalisation process is such that, for a broad range of reasons, some cases will take longer than others to process.  In some instances, completing the necessary checks can take a considerable period of time.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Immigration Status

Questions (788)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

788. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the procedure to be followed to regularise the position of a person here (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32738/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that it would appear the person's presence in the State may be unlawful as their most recent permission to remain in the State expired in January, 2017. I am further advised that INIS has no record of an outstanding request from the person concerned for permission to remain in the State.

The Deputy will appreciate that, under the relevant provisions of the Immigration Act, 2004, a non-national may not be in the State other than within the terms of a permission from the Minister for Justice and Equality.  In order to allow for a full examination of the person's circumstances, the person concerned should write to Unit 1, Domestic Residence and Permissions Division, INIS, 13/14 Burgh Quay, Dublin 2 and provide a detailed account and documentary evidence of their personal circumstances since they entered the State. 

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Immigration Status

Questions (789)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

789. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding the determination for eligibility for permission to remain in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32739/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am informed by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the person concerned made an application on 11 April, 2019 for permission to remain as the dependant spouse of a general work permit holder. The Deputy will appreciate that applications are dealt with in chronological order. I understand that the application is currently under consideration and the person concerned will be contacted by INIS in due course.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by email using the Oireachtas Mail facility, which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up-to-date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the email service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy's view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Immigration Status

Questions (790)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

790. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the current or expected residency status in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32740/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am informed by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the person concerned made an application on 4  June, 2019 for permission to remain as the dependant spouse of a general work permit holder. The Deputy will appreciate that applications are dealt with in chronological order. I understand that the application is currently under consideration and the person concerned will be contacted by INIS in due course.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by email using the Oireachtas Mail facility, which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up-to-date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the email service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy's view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Immigration Policy

Questions (791)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

791. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the extent to which a person (details supplied) can obtain residency status in their own right in view of the fact that they are dependent on their spouse who has work permit status; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32741/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am informed by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that detailed information on the circumstances in which the person concerned may seek permission to reside in their own right is contained in the INIS Policy Document on Non-EEA Family Reunification. This information can be accessed on the INIS website at www.inis.gov.ie.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by email using the Oireachtas Mail facility, which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up-to-date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the email service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy's view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Eligibility

Questions (792)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

792. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding the determination of eligibility for naturalisation in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32742/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the processing of the application for a certificate of naturalisation from the person referred to by the Deputy is ongoing. On completion of the necessary processing the application will be submitted to me for decision as expeditiously as possible. Should further documentation be required it will be requested from the applicant in due course.

As the Deputy will appreciate, the granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation is a privilege and an honour which confers certain rights and entitlements not only within the State but also at European Union level and it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process.

It is recognised that all applicants for citizenship would wish to have a decision on their application without delay. The nature of the naturalisation process is such that, for a broad range of reasons, some cases will take longer than others to process.  In some instances, completing the necessary checks can take a considerable period of time.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility, which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Immigration Status

Questions (793)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

793. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding stamp 4 in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32748/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the person concerned was granted permission to remain in the State on a stamp 4 basis as the parent of an Irish citizen child on 1 March, 2002. The permission was subsequently renewed with the latest permission granted up to 21 July, 2016 by the Garda National Immigration Bureau. 

I am further informed that representations were received from the person concerned on 23 January, 2018.  INIS was in contact with the person concerned on 11 October, 2018 seeking supporting documentary evidence, however, INIS has no record of a response. I understand it remains open to the person concerned to provide the required information and the application will be given detailed consideration by INIS.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Applications

Questions (794)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

794. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding the determination of an application for naturalisation by a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32749/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the application for a certificate of naturalisation from the person referred to by the Deputy continues to be processed and will be submitted to me for decision as expeditiously as possible. If further documentation is required it will be requested from the applicant in due course. The applicants new address has been noted by INIS.

As the Deputy will appreciate, the granting of Irish citizenship through naturalisation is a privilege and an honour which confers certain rights and entitlements not only within the State but also at European Union level and it is important that appropriate procedures are in place to preserve the integrity of the process.

It is recognised that all applicants for citizenship would wish to have a decision on their application without delay. The nature of the naturalisation process is such that, for a broad range of reasons, some cases will take longer than others to process.  In some instances, completing the necessary checks can take a considerable period of time.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Naturalisation Applications

Questions (795)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

795. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the position regarding an application for regularisation of residency in the case of a person (details supplied); when passports in connection with the case will be returned; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32750/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that an application for a certificate of naturalisation has been received on behalf of the person referred to by the Deputy. The application received was submitted on an incorrect form.

The incorrect form, application fee and the original Irish and South African passports were returned to the applicant’s mother on 12 July 2019. The correct form was also included and this must be completed and returned to the INIS office along with the supporting documentation.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Wards of Court

Questions (796, 798)

Catherine Murphy

Question:

796. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the various State bodies involved in setting up the decision support service; the persons or bodies involved in the process; the expected timelines for migrating wards of court to the new service; his plans to carry out same on an incremental basis; the way in which same will be decided; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32792/19]

View answer

Catherine Murphy

Question:

798. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Justice and Equality his plans to nominate a representative from the wards of court process to the establishment group for the decision support service; the way in which same will be carried out; if not, the reason therefor; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32794/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 796 and 798 together.

The Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Act 2015 provides a modern statutory framework to support decision-making by adults with capacity difficulties. The Act was signed into law on 30 December 2015 but has not yet been fully commenced.  The Act provides for the establishment of new administrative processes and support measures, including the setting up of the Decision Support Service within the Mental Health Commission (a body under the Department of Health). 

The 2015 Act will also abolish the current Wards of Court system by repealing the Lunacy Regulation (Ireland) Act 1871. Section 54 of the 2015 Act provides for the review by the wardship court of the capacity of all current adult wards within three years of the commencement of Part 6 of the Act.  Section 54 also provides that an application for a review may, with the consent of the wardship court, be made by the ward, or a relative or friend of the ward who has had such personal contact with the ward over such period of time that a relationship of trust exists between them, or such other person as appears to the wardship court to have a sufficient interest or expertise in the welfare of the ward.

Section 55 of the 2015 Act provides that following a review of his or her capacity, the ward will be discharged from wardship and, depending on the outcome of the review, the wardship court may, if it is satisfied that the ward has capacity, order that the property of the former ward be returned to him or her, or make a declaration that either the ward lacks capacity unless the assistance of a suitable person as a co-decision-maker is made available to him or her, or make a declaration that the ward lacks capacity even if the assistance of a suitable person as a co-decision-maker were made available to him or her.

If a declaration regarding lack of capacity is made by the wardship court, the former ward will be offered the support option most appropriate to his or her needs i.e. the appointment of a co-decision-maker or decision-making representative to support the former ward. The safeguards and procedures of the 2015 Act will then apply to the former ward.

Part 6 of the 2015 Act will be commenced when the Decision Support Service is open for business and ready to roll out the new decision-making support options. The adults currently in wardship will transition to the new decision-making support arrangements provided for in the 2015 Act on a phased basis over 3 years from the commencement of Part 6. The scheduling of reviews of the capacity of wards following the commencement of Part 6 will be a matter for the courts.

The Director of the Decision Support Service is working towards being operational and ready for the commencement of the main provisions of the 2015 Act in 2020. This lead-in timeframe ensures that the necessary staff resources, processes, IT system, expert panels, codes of practice and regulations will be in place so that the Decision Support Service will have the capacity to be up and running effectively. There are many complex strands to this work, including involvement of multiple organisations, and the situation is being kept under ongoing review as the preparatory work on implementation moves forward.

A high-level Steering Group comprised of senior officials from the Department of Justice and Equality, the Department of Health, the Mental Health Commission and the Courts Service, together with the Director of the Decision Support Service, is overseeing the establishment and commissioning of the Decision Support Service and this work is ongoing.  I can confirm that the Registrar of the Office of Wards of Court is already a member of this Steering Group.

Assisted Decision Making

Question No. 798 answered with Question No. 796.

Questions (797)

Catherine Murphy

Question:

797. Deputy Catherine Murphy asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the estimated cost of setting up the decision support service; the funds available; the areas the funds are earmarked for; the initial estimated staff complement; the estimated staff complement when fully operational; the specialist staff which will need to be recruited; if the timeline for setting up the service is dependent on additional Exchequer funding; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32793/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

The Assisted Decision-Making (Capacity) Act 2015 provides a modern statutory framework to support decision-making by adults with capacity difficulties. The Act was signed into law on 30 December 2015 but has not yet been fully commenced.  The Act provides for the establishment of new administrative processes and support measures, including the setting up of the Decision Support Service within the Mental Health Commission (a body under the Department of Health). 

As regards funding made available by my Department, the 2018 Budget provided for an allocation of €3 million for the Decision Support Service in a new subhead D. 10 of the Justice and Equality Vote.  €2.111 million of the 2018 allocation was drawn down.  €3.5 million has been allocated for the Decision Support Service for 2019. The expenditure requirements for the Decision Support Service for 2020 are being evaluated in the context of the Estimates process that is currently under way.

I am advised by the Mental Health Commission that there are currently seven persons employed by the Mental Health Commission to operationalise the Decision Support Service, including the Director of the Decision Support Service. These staff are supported by the Mental Health Commission's Corporate Operations function. Significant work has been done by the Mental Health Commission on the detailed scoping and design of services to be provided by the Decision Support Service. This will inform the required staff complement when fully operational, including any specialist staff.

The Decision Support Service is working towards being operational and ready for the commencement of the main provisions of the 2015 Act in 2020.  The Deputy will appreciate that a lead in timeframe is needed to ensure that the necessary staff resources, processes, IT system, expert panels, codes of practice and regulations will be in place so that the Decision Support Service will have the capacity to be up and running effectively.

Question No. 798 answered with Question No. 796.

Closed-Circuit Television Systems

Questions (799)

Michael Healy-Rae

Question:

799. Deputy Michael Healy-Rae asked the Minister for Justice and Equality his plans to allow community closed-circuit television, CCTV, (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32805/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Justice)

CCTV systems installed for the purposes of crime prevention and as aids to policing in areas to which the general public routinely have access fall into two distinct but complementary categories, namely Garda CCTV systems and community-based CCTV systems.

Community CCTV is governed by section 38(3)(c) of the Garda Síochána Act 2005 and the Garda Síochána (CCTV) Order 2006 (SI No 289 of 2006). This legal framework requires that any proposed community CCTV scheme must:

- be approved by the local Joint Policing Committee,

- have the prior support of the relevant local authority, which must also undertake to act as data controller and

- have the authorisation of the Garda Commissioner.

This is the legal basis for all community CCTV schemes and these key legal requirements have not changed since 2006.

In terms of the question of data protection, the Deputy may wish to be aware that on 29 November 2018, the Data Protection Commission issued a note (available on its website www.dataprotection.ie) confirming that there is a legal basis for community-based CCTV and that the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) does not introduce new barriers in that regard.  In particular, the Office in its note confirmed that:

“Data protection legislation does not stand in the way of the roll-out of Community-based CCTV schemes that have been authorised by the Garda Commissioner. Once the local authority in the administrative area concerned is willing to take on and deliver on its responsibilities as a data controller for the schemes concerned, there is no legal impediment under data protection legislation to the scheme commencing.”

The Data Protection Commission recently also circulated broad guidance for data controllers on CCTV (also available at www.dataprotection.ie) which I am confident will be of interest and assistance to all stakeholders and in particular, to local authorities. 

The Programme for a Partnership Government commits to supporting investment in CCTV systems. In furtherance of this commitment, a grant-aid scheme is administered by my Department to assist groups meeting the legal requirements for CCTV and who wish to establish community-based CCTV systems in their local areas.  Eligible groups, including community groups and local authorities, can apply for grant-aid of up to 60% of the total capital cost of a proposed CCTV system, up to a maximum total of €40,000.

In establishing the grant-aid scheme, the Department consulted broadly, including with the Office of the Data Protection Commission, An Garda Síochána, the Office of the Attorney General and the Local Government Management Agency (LGMA).  My Department continues to engage with all relevant parties, reflecting the reality that all stakeholders have the same objective – safer and more secure communities. 

I am keen to ensure that all interested groups, in both rural and urban areas, have the opportunity to take advantage of the availability of the grant aid scheme.  Further details are available to download from my Department's website - www.justice.ie and support and guidance is available to help interested groups through a dedicated email address communitycctv@justice.ie.

Immigration Status

Questions (800)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

800. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if leave to remain and or stamp 4 is available in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32808/19]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that, in response to a notification pursuant to the provisions of Section 3 of the Immigration Act 1999 (as amended), written representations have been submitted on behalf of the person concerned.

These representations, together with all other information and documentation on file, will be fully considered, under Section 3 (6) of the Immigration Act 1999 (as amended) and all other applicable legislation, in advance of a final decision being made.

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up to date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.

Asylum Applications Data

Questions (801, 900)

Bernard Durkan

Question:

801. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality when original documentation will be retuned in order to facilitate other requests in the case of a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32811/19]

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Bernard Durkan

Question:

900. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if and when original passport documentation will be returned to a person (details supplied); and if he will make a statement on the matter. [33259/19]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 801 and 900 together.

As the Deputy is aware, if an application for asylum or subsidiary protection has been made in the State, for confidentiality reasons it is not the practice to comment on such applications and the applicant or his legal representative should contact either the International Protection Office (IPO) or the International Protection Appeals Tribunal (IPAT) directly, as appropriate.

The IPO may be contacted: by email to info@ipo.gov.ie; by telephone to the IPO Customer Service Centre at 01 6028008 or in writing to Customer Service Centre, International Protection Office, 79-83 Lower Mount Street, Dublin 2. The International Protection Appeals Tribunal may be contacted either: by email to info@protectionappeals.ie; by telephone at 01-4748400 (or Lo-Call 1890 201 458), or in writing to Corporate Services Division, The International Protection Appeals Tribunal, 6-7 Hanover Street East, Dublin D02 W320.

Following the commencement of the International Protection Act 2015 on 31 December 2016, new arrangements for the investigation and determination of applications for international protection (refugee status and subsidiary protection) and cases involving permission to remain in the State have been introduced. Such applications are now processed, as part of a single application procedure, by the International Protection Office (IPO) which has replaced the Office of the Refugee Applications Commissioner (ORAC) from that date. The staff of that Office (the Chief International Protection Officer and International Protection Officers) are independent in the performance of their protection functions.

For your information, on 27 February 2017, the Chief International Protection Officer, following consultation with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), published a statement on the Prioritisation of Applications under the International Protection Act 2015 which is available on the website of the International Protection Office (www.ipo.gov.ie).

Queries in relation to the status of individual immigration cases may be made directly to the INIS of my Department by e-mail using the Oireachtas Mail facility which has been specifically established for this purpose. This service enables up-to-date information on such cases to be obtained without the need to seek information by way of the Parliamentary Questions process. The Deputy may consider using the e-mail service except in cases where the response from the INIS is, in the Deputy’s view, inadequate or too long awaited.