Yes, BUT we've already taken in too many refugees
In 2021 Ireland received 0.4% of the EU's total asylum applications.1 New arrivals are actually down 48% since the beginning of 2023.2
BUT they should go to other, larger countries than ours
They already do - Germany, France, Spain and Austria were the main countries of
destination for first-time asylum applicants in the EU in 2022. 3
BUT Ireland doesn’t have enough room, we need to be housing Irish people first
Refugees are generally housed in places not normally designated for Irish citizens.
Also a lack of housing is not the key problem – it’s a lack of political priority. 1 in 25 homes are vacant,4 we need to solve our housing crisis as well as show solidarity with refugees. Let’s challenge the people with power rather than those with none.
BUT they’re not REAL refugees, some of the countries aren’t even at war with anyone
A common myth is that asylum seekers from nations not impacted by war or famine
are not ‘genuine refugees’. People suffering persecution or violence because of race,
religion, nationality, political opinion or sexuality are all recognised internationally as being in need of sanctuary.5
Even so, they’re just here to scam our welfare system
Asylum seekers do not receive social welfare and are permitted to work after five
months of being here. Migrant workers are also statistically more likely to establish
businesses, therefore creating jobs rather than stealing them! 6
BUT what about the risks of letting in ‘unvetted men’ of ‘military age’
This phrase is used frequently by protesters and the far right, 7 which has been documented as using this issue to grow their base. The fact is that many refugees who leave their homes do not have paperwork and there is no vetting systems. Implying that people are to be feared is a political tactic of the right, and one we should arm people against. 8
BUT our approach is just allowing human trafficking
Refugees will flee from trauma and violence regardless of whether we welcome them.
Whilst the total number of presumed trafficking victims in Ireland actually fell from 103 in 2017 to 44 in 2022, our government has failed to convict anyone for trafficking for labour exploitation in Ireland. 9