Home > Dáil Éireann debate. Written answer 402 – Asylum seekers [38208/22].

[Oireachtas] Dáil Éireann debate. Written answer 402 – Asylum seekers [38208/22]. (13 Jul 2022)

External website: https://www.oireachtas.ie/en/debates/question/2022...

402. Deputy Richard Bruton asked the Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth if he will outline the medical and psychological supports which are provided for those seeking asylum, who may have difficult experiences to overcome as they seek to develop a new life, and in particular services to help divert people from alcohol or other substance dependencies and whether such services are delivered on site where larger numbers are accommodated together. [38208/22]

Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth: First of all, I would like to assure you that the health and wellbeing of all people who avail of accommodation provided by this Department is of the highest priority to myself and my officials. All services for international protection (IP) applicants are mainstreamed. Applicants access health services through the same referral pathways as Irish citizens, including referrals to medical and psychological support services through primary care, GP referral and emergency services.

The International Protection Accommodation Service's (IPAS) response is based on needs that are identified through referrals to the Resident Welfare team. This team utilises community based services that specialise in supporting those that are misusing drugs and alcohol and any other psychological and welfare needs. Each referral is triaged and discussed with a social work team.

The social work team comprises of three social work team leaders. Upon discussion, it is decided that a member of the social work team complete a welfare check in respect of a IP applicant. This involves a conversation with the IP applicant, and can also include a separate conversation with the centre manager. The social work team leader undertaking the welfare check seeks consent from the IP applicant and then contacts appropriate local services/agencies that are able to assist issues/difficulties identified.

IPAS, through Vulnerability Assessments, identifies needs and supports for difficulties such as drug and alcohol dependency. The HSE Social Inclusion Officer may also be contacted to avail of any HSE supports. NGOs working with different centres are contacted to support the IP applicant. IPAS’s National Reception Centre (Balseskin) Medical Centre has psychology services that identifies dependency difficulties early and provides brief support for IP applicants when they are in the National Reception Centre and make onward referrals on dispersal if required.

I trust that that this information can provide you the necessary reassurance that the Government is committed to the welfare of all residents of accommodation centres.

Item Type
Dail Debates
Publication Type
Drug Type
All substances
Intervention Type
Treatment method, Harm reduction, Screening / Assessment, Policy
13 July 2022

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