Drogheda Hotel to House up to 500 Asylum Seekers | Newstalk

Drogheda hotel to house up to 500 asylum seekers | Newstalk

The biggest hotel in Drogheda is set to house up to 500 asylum seekers from next month.

Newstalk’s Chief News Reporter Barry Whyte went to Drogheda to get some reaction to the news from the local community. Barry explains what he heard, on The Pat Kenny Show.

The Tánaiste has said he understands the concerns of those protesting against the use of the biggest hotel in Drogheda to house asylum seekers.

The 113-bed ‘D Hotel’ is due to take in up to 500 asylum seekers from next month.

Local councillors have claimed the loss of the four-star property overlooking the River Boyne will “hugely affect” tourism in the town.

On Newstalk Breakfast this morning, Tánaiste Micheál Martin said he understands people’s concerns – but warned that the high numbers of asylum seekers arriving in Ireland has put the Government under “huge pressure”.

He said the Government must draw up clear guidelines regarding where new asylum seeker centres are located.

“I do understand their concerns because of the nature of this particular hotel in the heart of the commercial centre in Drogheda, yes, I do understand their concern,” he said.

“The Department of Children is under huge pressure because of the numbers now seeking asylum in Ireland.

“We have increased resources to try and fast-track and to try and process applications as quickly as we possibly can, but in January alone of this year over 2000 people came into the country seeking asylum alone.

“Now that’s nearly double the average of what was happening last year, so we have a real issue and a real pressure point here, but I do understand the concerns.”

He said the contract for the Drogheda hotel has already been signed – but said Government must take on board the opinions of local communities in the future.

“I think Government has to review and endeavour to develop guidelines in respect of how we intervene and where we locate [accommodation],” he said.

“My understanding is the contract has been signed, but I do think more broadly, we have to take on board what people are saying to us as well.”

Minister Martin also discussed calls to expel the Israeli Ambassador from Ireland and RTÉ’s appearance at yesterday’s Oireachtas committee.

#immigration #drogheda #ireland
Credit to : Newstalk

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