Nasc welcomes introduction of humanitarian admission programme for refugee families

Tue, November 14, 2017

Nasc welcomes the statement made by Minister Charlie Flanagan and Minister of State David Stanton this afternoon of the introduction of the new Family Reunification Humanitarian Admission Programme (FRHAP), as part of the Government’s commitments under the Irish Refugee Protection Programme (IRPP).

“Nasc has long called for the introduction of a family linked humanitarian admission programme, as a complementary pathway for people fleeing conflict to reunite with family members here in Ireland,” states Nasc CEO Fiona Finn.

“Nasc’s Safe Passage campaign, which has been active for the past 18 months, and which had strong public and political support, called for the introduction of a programme of this nature, and we are very happy that Ministers Flanagan and Stanton, and senior officials in the Department, have introduced this programme, which will allow refugees and their families who have been separated by conflict, to be reunited here in Ireland,” comments Ms. Finn.

“While we do not yet know all of the details of the proposed scheme, for instance the family members who will potentially be included, we do know that this has the potential to ameliorate some of the worst elements of the family reunification provisions in the International Protection Act, and for that we very much welcome it,” continues Ms. Finn.

“However, we are disappointed that the scheme appears to exclude non-refugee families. People living in Ireland who are not refugees but have family members currently in conflict zones are incredibly limited in their options to bring their families to safety. In our experience, it is not only refugee families who are impacted by war and conflict,” states Ms. Finn.

“As much as we welcome this scheme as a complementary measure, we recognise that it is only temporary and discrete. The Family Reunification Amendment Bill, which passed in the Seanad last week, would offer a durable, permanent solution for refugee families going forward.”

“Taken in conjunction with the Government’s recent commitment to introduce community sponsorship, it is clear that Ireland is taking a lead role in developing positive and innovative responses to the ongoing refugee crisis in Europe.”

“We look forward to working with the Department over the next two years to reunite refugee families fleeing conflict,” finishes Ms. Finn.

ENDS.

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