Peter McVerry Trust Statement on White Paper to End Direct Provision and to Establish a New International Protection Support Service
Peter McVerry Trust, the national housing and homeless charity, has welcomed the publication of the White Paper to End Direct Provision by Minister Roderic O’Gorman. The charity has played a key role in progressing and securing housing pathways for people exiting Direct Provision in recent years helping over 1,000 people to exit Direct Provision across the southern half of the country.
Pat Doyle, the charity’s CEO said “The final white paper to end direct provision marks a welcome and notable shift in policy and supports for people in the international protection system. We believe the white paper offers the opportunity to deliver a framework of supports and accommodation that is person centred and will better reflect the needs of people who have suffered and are still dealing with significant trauma.”
Role of Approved Housing Bodies
The white paper sets out a key role for approved housing bodies around the provision of housing and in some instances greater availability of supports for vulnerable persons. Mr Doyle said the charity expected to play an even larger role in providing accommodation pathways over the coming years.
“Peter McVerry Trust looks forward to playing its role in responding to the housing needs of people in and exiting the international protect system. We have significant experience in supporting people out the Direct Provision system. Our Southern Area Resettlement Programme, which works in partnership with IPAS, has already helped over 580 households consisting of 1,022 people into a home by securing HAP properties.”
“The move within the White Paper to offer models such as the Capital Assistance Scheme and Leasing opportunities is particularly welcome. These schemes, which Peter McVerry Trust advocated for in our discussions with the Minister and his department, together with the renewal of vacant building stock will
clearly result in more suitable accommodation coming on stream and form a core part of the transition from the older model of provision.”
Mr Doyle said he was pleased to see the plan seek early buy in and involvement of key stator partners. “I’m pleased to see that the Minister and his Department have sought the early involvement of Local Authorities and the Housing Agency to ensure adequate supports are available and that we have buy in from these key stakeholders in the early stages of this new model. I would also encourage the many Approved Housing Bodies across Ireland to review what role they can play in supporting this programme, and as President of the Irish Council for Social Housing it something I will seek to promote and encourage.”