“This is yet another example of the many ‘accidental cruelties’ of the direct provision system. Nobody means to do harm and everybody does their job, sort of, but things seem to happen to persons in direct provision that don’t happen to other people because it’s a system without a heart.”
Karen Ward, speaking of Mary McAleese and her guest, said: “They really felt the essence of pilgrimage – that every step is a prayer, that it takes you deeper into yourself, and being out in nature.”
Catholic Bishop of Meath and Church of Ireland Primate focus on the human cost of the homeless crisis in their Christmas messages.
“We were not just speaking out because there were Catholics involved – there was a justice issue regardless of the faith of any of the folk in the direct provision centre.” –Fr Damian Farnon
The introduction of a more general right to work from June, for those who can avail of it, should ease some of the stress people experience while waiting. Ultimately, however, they need certainty about their fate to move forward with their lives – Enda O’Neill, Head of Office with UNHCR Ireland.
The government's minimalist response to the Supreme Court judgement, does not reflect the equality of dignity or the compassion that is so often promoted as a core value of Irish society.
“Christmas asks of us that we turn from singing carols to raising our voices to ensure the voices of the vulnerable are heard and their needs recognised” - Archbishop Michael Jackson.
“We talk a lot about the challenges of family life but those of you who are here today are here because you know that overall the family brings a fulfilment into your lives that is quite unique.”
“The question which is agitating the world today is a social one. It is a struggle between those who have nothing and those who have too much. It is a violent clash of opulence and poverty which is shaking the ground under our feet.” – SVP founder Frederic Ozanam.
Some of the most common complaints made to JRS Ireland about living conditions related to a lack of access to cooking facilities and inadequate private living space.
As the country prepares to welcome refugees, we are "challenged to engage with the poverty, homelessness sub-standard accommodation that many are living in".
“Urgent reform is required to avoid the creation of an unjust two-tier system in which the needs of those waiting for status for many years are overlooked.”
Desperate attempts by thousands of refugees to cross the Mediterranean is a challenge to ‘Christian’ Europe, which demands a coordinated and compassionate response.