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Spiralling wait times for citizenship applications must be addressed - Pa Daly TD and Senator Niall Ó Donnghaile

20 April, 2022 - by Niall Ó Donnghaile, Pa Daly TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Law Reform, Equality and Integration, Pa Daly TD, and Sinn Féin's Leader in the Seanad, Niall Ó Donnghaile, have today expressed concern at the waiting times for citizenship applications, following figures released to the party which show average waiting times now stand at 23 months.

The figures were released to Teachta Daly in response to a parliamentary question. 

Teachta Daly said:  

“I have been reliably informed desperate applicants are resorting to putting in legal letters and bringing the Department to court over the delay in applications. With average waiting times now at 23 months, it is no surprise people are having to fall back on litigation to get a timely decision.  

“A post-covid backlog is understandable and the measures the Department are looking at should hopefully speed up the process. In the meantime, a concerted effort must be made to clear this backlog, as with a number of other initiatives ongoing such as the undocumented scheme, it is important certainty is brought to so many uncertain of their status.” 

Senator Ó Donnghaile added:

“The Department should introduce a similar facility to that introduced to handle the passport application backlog.  

"The facility is very simple; it is an emergency telephone service for elected representatives to speak with competent staff, on behalf of those applying for a passport. It has helped elected representatives and those passport applicants in need of help.”

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