Christian is from Congo-Brazaville,he has been asylum seeker in Ireland since 2012. Lucky is a South African, he was living in direct provision for the last 4 years and has now been moved to Dublin.
I interviewed them during me The New Rebels show on Irish Radio International, with Irish elections in mind and also the World social work day.
It ended up being a very interesting discussion which ended up filling the whole programme, and it could easily have filled 2 programmes.
We have repeated it often. Direct provision is mentally killing people, and especially children, who often end up staying 5 to 10 years.
Once people get the papers to stay in the country they are left to go into the community without any help, They are often institutionalised and are finding it very tough. There is no help at all by social workers.
With the migrant crisis now in Europe, Ireland has taken in Syrians, some of whom stay in the same direct provision centres. What worries people like Christian and Lucky is that these refugees stay around 6 months before they get their refugee status, but Christian, Lucky and other Africans are still waiting, without any news on what to expect.
According to them, the only possible way forward with direct provision is to end it. Give people the right to work, they want to contribute to society, they certainly don’t want to rely on social security, as many peolpe seem to think.
The New Rebels is a programme on Irish Radio International , presented by myself and co-produced by Tony Statery
Listen to the interview here.