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Gerry Adams TD backs Right to Work for Asylum Seekers

14 June, 2018 - by Gerry Adams

Sinn Féin Louth TD Gerry Adams has welcomed the launch today of the campaign by the Movement of Asylum Seekers in support of the right to work.

Teachta Adams said:

“Last year the Supreme Court ruled that the prohibition on asylum seekers to work was unconstitutional. 11 months ago the Minister for Justice established an Inter-Departmental Taskforce to examine the implications and to make proposals to bring the system in line with the Supreme Court judgement. Almost a year later the Taskforce has still not reported.

"In addition, the indications emerging from it indicate a determination on the part of the government to adopt a minimalist approach which will in effect circumvent and undermine the Supreme Court ruling.

"This is evident in the imposition of strict bans on asylum seekers seeking employment in over 60 sectors, including retail and hospitality.

"They have to pay one thousand euro for an employment permit – an impossible objective given the €21.60 they are expected to live on weekly. Also, an asylum seeker is restricted to jobs with a minimum salary of thirty thousand euro. Those conditions would rule many citizens out of work.

"The government’s restrictions are rigid, unworkable and unfair to asylum seekers.

"Sinn Féin supports the right of asylum seekers to immediate access to the labour market; to the same labour rights as EU and Irish citizens; and to access to enterprise supports and training courses.

“The Direct Provision system is shameful and unacceptable. It reflects an attitude which in previous years created the dreadful Magdalene laundries and the industrial schools. It should be dismantled and a new, more humane, transparent and accountable system, based on best international practice, should be put in place."

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