Sir, – Kathy Sheridan rightly enthuses about the elation most people feel upon receiving certification of their Irish citizenship ("Acquisition of Irish passport as Brexit-avoidance ticket is annoying", Opinion & Analysis, September 8th). However, she makes no mention of the very high cost involved in attaining this precious document: an application fee of €175, followed by a pre-certification fee of €950 – amounting to a total of €1,125 per successful applicant. Given that 422,000 people from the UK abruptly discovered their Irish ancestry between 2016 and 2020, our Government has amassed the tidy sum of €474,750,000 from these new-found citizens alone.
Not bad going, especially as many of them will barely (if ever) set foot in this country.
As a result, very few are ever likely to become a “burden” on the State. – Yours, etc,
A chara, – In her article on Brexit and Irish passports, Kathy Sheridan rightly draws our attention to the fact that some recent recipients of Irish passports otherwise have little or no connection with or interest in Ireland, save for an Irish passport’s mitigation of some of the effects of Brexit.
While there may be still merits to a relatively generous passport policy for those with Irish ancestry, surely it is time to reconsider our policy towards those born in this country, but who do not have Irish parents, and are therefore not automatically entitled to an Irish passport?
Immigrants and their children, born here, have greatly enhanced all aspects of Irish life. Why should a person, born and raised in this country, have to apply to be an Irish citizen, when passports appear to be so readily available for a person who may never have set foot in this country, and who knows or cares little about it? – Is mise,
Sir, – Kathy Sheridan’s comments on the Irish passport as a Brexit avoidance ticket is perhaps a reminder that, if the North should vote itself into the Republic, the State will acquire a million new citizens to cherish like all its children, but who will owe it no loyalty and who will hold fast to what they have.
Those dreaming of a 32-county republic may wish to reflect on the old saying: “Be careful what you wish for – you might get it”. – Yours, etc,
Sir, –Kathy Sheridan’s column neglects to highlight the three- to four-month delay being experienced by Irish citizens for a passport for their newborn children. Such delays, while Covid-impacted, are also resulting from the deluge of qualified citizens of other nations seeking an Irish passport of “convenience” to counter Brexit-imposed travel delays, among other reasons.
Should our own citizens seeking to travel with newborns not rank above those seeking Brexit-avoidance tickets, particularly those who “ have to hold their nose and apply for an Irish passport”? – Yours, etc,