Dozens of accommodation centres for Ukrainian refugees set to close

Dozens Of Accommodation Centres For Ukrainian Refugees Set To Close
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By Cate McCurry, PA

Dozens of accommodation centres for Ukrainian refugees are set to close, the Taoiseach has said.

Almost 70 contracts for Ukrainian refugee accommodation will expire “shortly”, according to Simon Harris.


Mr Harris said that many hotel and community facilities which were being used as refugee accommodation will made available again for local use.

Speaking to Ireland AM on Virgin Media, Mr Harris said that the state needs to move “beyond this emergency response” to migration.

Irish Migration
Dozens of accommodation centres for Ukrainian refugees are set to close, the Taoiseach has said. Photo: PA.


“Firstly, we need to stop taking the only hotel in the town and there is some good news in relation to this,” he added.

“In Co Kerry, for example, we’ve been able to put two hotels that had been used for migration back into use. There are 68 contracts currently being used for Ukrainian accommodation that will not be used shortly and that we’ll see many hotels and other facilities coming back into their community, that’s important for communities to see and to know.

“The second thing though is, and I’ve been very honest about this, we have to stop the conversation about migration only being about accommodation.

“If you do that you’re going to completely lose the people in this country, you’re going to see a breakdown in social cohesion.


“I believe very strongly that Irish people are compassionate. I really believe it. Irish communities have done an incredible job.

“We have taken a number of measures to show people that there’s a rules based system, that if you come here and you don’t have a right to be here, you’re going to find out about that quicker and be asked to leave, that our welfare system is there to support you, but it’s never open to abuse.”

In recent months, the Government has introduced tighter rules around welfare supports for asylum seekers and Ukrainians.



Last week, the Government announced plans to means-test asylum seekers.

Social Protection Minister Heather Humphreys is currently looking at means-test plans to be introduced next month, following a recommendation from the Comptroller and Auditor General.


Under the plans, international protection applicants will have their welfare payments cut if they are employed and earning more than €125 a week.

The Government has already reduced the social welfare payments for Ukrainian refugees who arrived after March from the job seekers’ rate of €232 to €38.80 per week.

Last week, it announced Ukrainians who fled to Ireland between 2022 and early 2024 and are living in state-provided accommodation will also have their allowances cut in the next three months.

The changes will not affect Ukrainians living in pledged accommodation and the private rental sector who arrived in Ireland before March this year.

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