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Doras View: 20 Years of Direct Provision

14/4/2020

Twenty years ago today (10th April 2020), the system of Direct Provision was established by the Department of Justice, as a means to receive International Protection Applicants in Ireland. At around the same time, a group of concerned Limerick locals formed what would become Doras, to show support and solidarity to those in the newly opened Direct Provision Centres – supposedly one of the final stages in their journey to seek refuge. What was supposed to be a system that people spent six months in turned out to be a several year-long wait in an institutional setting for too many. Over the past twenty years thousands have waited and suffered in a system which seeks to rob people of their independence, dignity and respect. Doras are still here, supporting and advocating for and with people in Direct Provision, while opposing it’s very existence. While there have been some small, hard-fought improvements over those twenty years, Direct Provision never was and never will be a suitable way of receiving International Protection Applicants. The current Covid-19 crisis only serves to highlight it’s inadequacy, with people in the system left almost powerless to take preventative measures against the virus. When the dust settles on this pandemic, we hope that we will be joined by you in calling once again on the Irish Government and the Department of Justice to #EndDirectProvision.

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