ICCL with other organisations have written to the Minister of Justice this afternoon calling for the closure of the Direct Provision Centre in Cahersiveen.
We believe the hotel there is unfit accommodation for people seeking international protection during the Covid-19 emergency. We are concerned the numbers of those testing positive for Covid-19 will continue to rise in a vicious circle until the Department of Justice closes this centre and provides proper own door accommodation for families and households. We were seriously concerned that a letter from the HSE was sent to residents at Caherciveen yesterday appearing to blame the residents for the rise in Covid-19 in the centre for not engaging in social distancing. Social distancing is self-evidently impossible in a place where people are forced to share facilities.
We are also concerned at reports from residents that the hotel was not cleaned properly following the removal of individuals who tested positive for Covid-19. We believe the government is not fulfilling its obligations under the EU Reception Directive to protect the physical and mental health of those seeking international protection in this country.