Review Underway Into Decision To Use Cashel Hostel To Accommodate Asylum Seekers

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Tipperary TD Jackie Cahill says the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY) is reviewing the decision to use the Cashel Town Hostel in light of further information supplied to the Department.  Cllr Roger Kennedy is seeking information about the decision making process since it emerged that the Department signed a 12-month lease with Earlsline Limited, a company headquartered in Monaghan, to house 74 males seeking asylum at Number 6 John Street, Cashel.

Speaking today, Cllr Kennedy says “It is my understanding that only No. 6 John Street, Cashel has been listed by the Department as providing accommodation to International Protection Applications, and that this building alone does not have near sufficient capacity to cater for the numbers being suggested this week.” In addition, Cllr Kennedy says that No 6 John Street is a listed structure with Tipperary County Council under the Cashel and Environs Development Plan 2013 and says “a warning letter was previously issued in relation to this property for unauthorised development.”

Both Public Representatives are concerned about the loss of accommodation in the building for homeless people if the lease arrangement is fulfilled.

“It is not right that one group of vulnerable people in our society would lose out on existing services in favour of another group” according to Deputy Cahill in a statement issued at 3pm today.

Details of the communication between Tipperary County Council and the Department responsible for housing people seeking asylum in Ireland have emerged. The Council says it advised the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY) that the hostel in Cashel, now contracted by the Department to accommodate 74 IPAS applicants, “is central to the Council’s homeless action plan and is of significant assistance when sourcing accommodation for those in need of emergency accommodation.”

The Council says there were 4 clients in the accommodation who are “homeless and it will be with great difficulty that alternative accommodation will be found to meet their immediate needs”. It is also understood that at times a family might be assigned a dormitory in the hostel even though not all beds would be occupied. Tipperary Council is adamant that it stressed the importance of this facility remaining available to service the needs of those presenting as homeless and in need of assistance within the county.   As regards Fire Certification for the building to accommodate 74 persons the Council says it is engaging with both the Tipperary Fire service and the Council’s Planning Department to gather this information – this is in response to a query from Cashel Based TD Martin Browne.

Opponents of the move to accommodate IPAS applicants in the building are also investigating the issue of planning permission for such a facility in a Protected Structure  – such properties have to secure planning permission to accommodate refugees.