Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Questions (129)

Catherine Martin


129. Deputy Catherine Martin asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if the tender documents for the new direct provision centres (details supplied) which his Department recently published have as a mandatory requirement of the tender, the provision of kitchen and cooking facilities in order that residents of these potential new centres can live under the independent living model; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [37851/19]

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Written answers (Question to Justice)

I can inform the Deputy that the specifications detailed in my Department's regional procurement processes, done through the eTenders online system, require that all bids must provide for independent living, i.e. that all residents are able to cook meals of their own choosing as well as providing designated living room space for families.

Any bidder that is successful in being placed on a framework and is drawn down from that framework has 16 weeks to carry out all necessary infrastructural works to deliver the independent living model as detailed in their tender submission.

I expect that the continued rollout of the independent living model will deliver significant improvements in living conditions and standards for residents, in particular families and children. I also recently published agreed National Standards for accommodation centres. The Standards will apply to all service providers contracted by the Department to operate and manage accommodation and reception centres. They provide a framework for the continued development of supports and services for residents by improving the quality of care and ensuring consistency across the centres. A copy of the Standards can be found on the Department's website