Residents in Watergate Apartments in Dublin 8 are facing eviction this Friday the 22nd of September by the Reception and Integration Agency (RIA) of the Department of Justice.
A number of residents of Watergate House direct provision centre are facing eviction Friday the 22nd of September. They have formed the Watergate House Residents Committee and have the following demands:
- No Forced Evictions
Residents should not be removed by force or sent back to direct provision while they search for suitable alternative accommodation.
- Residents to stay in Watergate House until suitable alternative accommodation is secured
Residents must be afforded the time needed to finally secure new homes without living under the threat of eviction.
Residents of Watergate House who been granted their residency and are now looking for their own private accommodation have been issued with multiple eviction letters from RIA. Residents have informed RIA that because of the severity of the housing crisis, they are finding it even harder to secure suitable housing for their families. Instead of assisting residents in finding alternative accommodation, RIA are forcing people to move back to direct provision centres across the country. A mother and four children, all in school in Dublin, were told they would be sent to Galway, while another resident was told he would be moved from Dublin to Longford.
MASI-The Movement of Asylum Seekers in Ireland, whose members are in Watergate and on the Committee, say “every Direct Provision resident who has been granted the right to stay in the country is looking forward to leaving Direct Provision and start a new life in the community. Because of the housing crisis we are facing in this country, they are forced to stay in Direct Provision for months or even years with no assistance or support to find adequate housing.”
Dublin Central Housing Action who are supporting the residents say that “Dublin City Council and the State are abdicating their responsibilities and it is a disaster.
Each week people who are facing eviction by landlords in the private rental sector and emergency accommodation come to our support group. To get out of homelessness Dublin City Council are simply telling people to search for landlords who accept Housing Assistance Payment (HAP). However, the reality is landlords are simply not accepting HAP, forcing more people to remain stuck in unsuitable emergency accommodation such as BnB’s, Hubs, and Direct Provision centres.”
Anti-Racism Network (ARN) fully support and stand in solidarity with the residents of Watergate House. It is absolutely outrageous and hypocritical for RIA to uproot families that have worked hard to build a new life in their local communities and ship them off to towns where they know no one. This eviction is further evidence of the racist discrimination that migrants and refugees face in this country on a daily basis. Housing discrimination is made worse by this government’s refusal to address the growing housing crisis in this country. Residents should not be punished for the failure of the state to provide support for people seeking adequate accommodation
Residents are asking supporters to be on the alert in case of attempted eviction today Friday 22nd September. Updates to follow on social media.