Almost 90 Ukrainian refugees arriving in Ireland every day, Oireachtas committee to hear

‘As the conflict develops, we expect arrivals to continue’

Displaced Ukrainian children walk alongside a line of vehicles at a border crossing in Kyriv, Ukraine. An average of 88 Ukrainian refugees continue to arrive in Ireland every day, senior officials will tell an Oireachtas committee. File photograph: Nathan Laine/Bloomberg

An average of 88 Ukrainian refugees continue to arrive in Ireland every day, senior officials will tell an Oireachtas committee on Tuesday, with arrivals expected to continue as the war goes on.

Over 83,000 Ukrainians have now been granted temporary protection orders and more than 61,000 of these have been provided with accommodation around the country.

Officials will tell the Oireachtas committee on equality and integration that this is “the equivalent of the population of Co Carlow”.

“Every person who has asked for shelter from our department continues to receive it with daily average arrivals presently standing at 88. As the conflict develops, we expect arrivals to continue,” officials will tell the committee according to opening statements circulated on Monday night.


However, the situation is different for people coming from other countries and claiming asylum – or international protection – here. More than 1,200 adult males have been told there is no accommodation for them this year. Of these, more than a thousand have been found beds after a period without accommodation while, as of last week, more than 200 remained sleeping on the streets or in places they had found themselves.

Over 770 contractors are being paid monthly for accommodating Ukrainian refugees, with almost €1 billion euros paid out since last year. Officials will tell the committee that following complaints about slow payments, efforts have been made to speed up the process. In recent weeks, the Department has been paying out €30 million a week, prioritising older invoices and what it calls “hardship cases”.

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Officials will tell TDs and Senators that almost 6,000 beds have been sourced this year for asylum seekers, while 145 emergency centres have been opened since the beginning of last year. However, 2,500 beds have been lost as hotels which were previously accommodating refugees for the State return to normal tourism business. A further 92 beds will be lost by June 10th, although officials say that they have renegotiated some contracts with hotels to keep the refugee beds.

Currently over 100 people are in tents at the Knocklisheen refugee accommodation centre in Co Clare, while tents for 128 people are shortly due to open at Mullingar Barracks.

Since the centre at Citywest stopped accepting new arrivals in January, the State has prioritised the provision of accommodation to children and families. This means some adult males have been told there is nowhere for them to stay and this has resulted in some people staying in tents on Dublin city streets. Officials will tell the committee that, as of the end of last week, 217 adult males remained unaccommodated, though this is a drop of almost 300 from the previous week.

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Meanwhile, Minister for Housing Darragh O’Brien has acknowledged that the delivery of modular homes for Ukrainian refugees has “been slower than one would have wished”.

Earlier this month, it emerged that up to half of the 700 quick-build modular houses approved by the Government to house Ukrainian refugees might not be completed by the end of the year over difficulties assessing suitable sites. The original completion date for those modular units on State land was November 2022 but the process has been beset by delays.

Pat Leahy

Pat Leahy

Pat Leahy is Political Editor of The Irish Times

Shauna Bowers

Shauna Bowers

Shauna Bowers is Health Correspondent of The Irish Times