Enforce asylum seeker report proposals in full – call

Enforce asylum seeker report proposals in full – call Fr Alan Hilliard

Only half the recommendations from State’s working group on asylum seekers have been implemented or initiated, according to the Irish Immigrant Support Centre.

An audit by Nasc of the Government’s progress in implementing the recommendations in the July 2015 report compiled by the Working Group on the Protection Process and Direct Provision, chaired by retired High Court judge Bryan McMahon, found that just 20 of the report’s 173 recommendations had been fully implemented.

Among the report’s key recommendations was that asylum seekers should receive a decision on their application within one year.


“We have conducted extensive research and information gathering for this audit, to help us verify the implementation of the recommendations. Needless to say, we have found a very different picture on that implementation than that presented by the Government,” Nasc CEO Fiona Finn said.

This July, Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan claimed that 98% of the recommendations in the McMahon report had either been fully implemented or were in progress.

“We could only verify that 20 recommendations had been fully implemented, and only 51% of the recommendations can be described as implemented or in progress,” Ms Finn said.

“We were very surprised when the Government announced it’s 98% figure – we were seeing something very different on the ground in our work with people in the protection process and in the direct provision system. That reality is what prompted us to produce this ‘Shadow Report’ of the Government’s progress on implementation.”


Fr Alan Hilliard, a leading figure in the Church’s response to asylum seekers and immigrants told The Irish Catholic that even without the Nasc report, it was clear that “there are certainly still gaps in the system”.

In particular he highlighted systemic failures surrounding how the direct provision system relates to wider Irish society.

“One thing I see is that there’s no bridging system between direct provision and society,” he said. “We’re very weak on models of integration.”

Nasc said it was “critical” that the State implement the remaining recommendations in the McMahon Report. “Only then will we be moving towards a more humane reception system for asylum seekers,” said Ms Finn.