Mercy Law Resource Centre supports the Irish Immigration Support Centre’s call for:
1) The training of frontline social welfare staff regarding entitlements and supports for migrants.
2) A coordinated approach between the Department of Social Protection and the Department of Justice in relation to the status of migrants and their entitlements.
Some migrants are not getting the support they are entitled to and often find it difficult to prove that Ireland is now their main centre of interest to qualify for habitual residency to avail of entitlements.
A report in 2012 undertaken by the Irish Immigration Support Centre, Crosscare and Doras Luimní, found some staff at social welfare offices had told migrants they were not eligible for payments when no assessment had been carried out. Other instances were recorded of migrants in extreme hardship being refused urgent payments.
Although steps have been taken by the Department to address issues, it is imperative that front line staff are aware of all current and changing regulations in relation to migrant entitlements.
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