Protestors call for Amnesty to inspect East Wall asylum accommodation

Protestors Call For Amnesty To Inspect East Wall Asylum Accommodation
Protestors have been active for weeks over Government policy on housing refugees in an unused office building on East Wall Road. Photo: Colin Keegan, Collins
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Sarah Slater

The East Wall Committee who are into their third week of protests over what they claim is the “inappropriate housing” of asylum seekers in a former ESB office block have called on Amnesty International to carry out inspections.

It is now understood that more than 380 men, women and children are being accommodated in makeshift cubicles which provide no privacy and security.


Nigel Murphy, a spokesperson for the East Wall Committee has called on the Minister for Diversity Roderic O’Gorman to allow Amnesty International inspectors to be allowed in to “view the conditions men, women and children” are being forced to live in.”

Security and privacy

Mr Murphy also said there also needs to be 24/7 security to protect “women and children being accommodated there in light of the conditions to give them the dignity, integrity that even Minister O’Gorman says they deserve.

“They have no privacy whatsoever which has been borne out by images provided by asylum seekers. People need to feel free from roaming eyes.”

He also said that gardai should be allowed to enter the building to carry out “random checks”.


Current projections by the Department of Equality said they have to meet their international obligations on housing asylum seekers. The Department has indicated there will be a shortfall of 15,000 beds for asylum seekers this month and it expects that the number of Ukrainians and International Protection applicants arriving is expected to remain at elevated levels.


The Department added that since January of this year there have been more than 12,300 international protection applicants arriving into Ireland. The Department pointed out that in the 10-year-period from 2010 to 2020 there were 3,500 such arrivals which is placing additional pressure on available accommodation.

A Department spokesperson said: “Since the International Protection applicants arrived in the Two Gateway accommodation centre in East Wall, the operator has proactively engaged with the residents. This has resulted in positive outcomes and a large majority of residents are happy with the services and the location.”

The Department explained that there are separate male and female showers. The shower units are private cubicles and are lockable. Furthermore, access control cards given to each resident are gender-specific, so males cannot access the female bathrooms and this is the same for females.


Showering times are managed and security are present in the corridor outside the showering facility to ensure greater safety. There are security personnel on each floor at all times.

The spokesperson added: “All accommodation is self-contained. The rooms and pods reach a height of 2.5m, therefore it is not possible for residents to overlook into a neighbouring pod or room.

“In addition, families and single males are segregated on separate floors. On the family floors there are a number of fathers residing there with their families in their own rooms. Each room or pod has integrated locks.

“The single males are on a separate floor and cannot access the family floors due to the access control arrangements and there are security personnel present in the corridor to each accommodation block”.

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