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Migrant Rights Centre Ireland Siobhan O ’ Donoghue.

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Presentation on theme: "Migrant Rights Centre Ireland Siobhan O ’ Donoghue."— Presentation transcript:

1 Migrant Rights Centre Ireland Siobhan O ’ Donoghue

2 What we do National rights focused organisation Direct work and advocacy with migrant workers and their families re immigration/legal status issues, employment and exploitation, accessing social protection/services etc Supporting migrant workers and their families to collectivise their experiences i.e. Migrants Forum, support group for migrant domestic and childcare workers Developing policy positions and lobbying on issues relevant to migration Networking at local, national, European and international level with migrant interests, specialist organisations, NGO ’ s, others

3 Documenting trends and patterns, undertaking research and promoting an analysis of migration that is rights based and concerned with economic and social development Education, training and awareness raising i.e. schools, community sector, media Promoting integration strategies and community based responses with local and community infrastructure

4 Some trends and patterns Migrant workers very vulnerable to exploitation Ownership of the work permit frequently used as a threat against migrant workers General employment conditions i.e. pay issues, hours of work, contract issues, unfair dismissal, tax/PRSI Minimum wage used as a ceiling not floor Lack of clarity in relation to the legal status of a worker if s/he becomes unemployed No provision being made for migrant workers here for some time Access to supports in seeking redress v limited and ad hoc Lack of integration between state agencies and departments

5 Migrant workers unaware of their rights and afraid to report Agencies regulated + unregulated playing a big role in migration process Significant amount of deskilling taking place Problems in accessing FAS services Many employers not aware of responsibilities Family Reunification process not uniform. Dependents not allowed to work leading to high level of skill and onward migration Accessing social services problematic i.e. maternity and child benefit, income adequacy support in situations of temporary unemployment or when pursuing legal cases

6 Experiences of racism and discrimination ongoing reality i.e. accessing banking services, work place Little or no integration taking place at community level 3 month exemption list generating many problems Undocumented workers exceptionally vulnerable V.easy to become undocumented Increasing feminisation of migration Migrant profile generally young, active and motivated Migration not a temporary process

7 The demand for migrant workers ‘ Celtic tiger ’ was catalyst : migration a global reality Economic expansion increases demand i.e. construction + service industry Structural change in the economy increases demand i.e. shift from manufacturing to knowledge based industry Declining fertility + ageing population (decline by 11% in EU over next decade) Increased dependency ratio + decreasing labour supply

8 Female participation in labour market increased = need for care work, costs involved Shorter working hours, longer holidays Early retirement Longer time spent in education Raised educational standards = shortage of unskilled labour The 3 D ’ s dirty, dangerous and difficult Migration no impact on unemployment levels

9 Some facts 27,400 work permits new or renewed so far this year On target to be the same as last year approx 40,000 Approx. 130,000 people on GNIB database Work permits, Work visas, Study visas, dependants, Work visa + authorisations = high skilled positions Work permit = general, low skilled Work permit = max 1 year Work visa = 2 years

10 Work permit owned by employer Work Visa held by employee Family reunification = 3 months for visa holders 1 year for workers under permit system Permit costs 500 euro Permit non transferable, property of the employer ‘ Leave to remain ’ stamp in passport gives right to reside in Ireland Study visa holders allowed to work 20 hours per week

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