Children in Direct Provision Accommodation

With the length of time in the asylum process ranging from less than a year to more than seven years, children spend a significant proportion of their childhood in Direct Provision accommodation. Children living in these centres are not necessarily applying for asylum themselves, but are the children of people seeking asylum and may have been born and lived their whole lives in Ireland. Regardless of their or their families’ status, these children did not choose to come to Ireland and they have no control over their circumstances.

All children need to be raised in an atmosphere where care providers offer emotional protection and support. In addition to a loving family life, children need stimulation, encouragement, instruction, rules and limitations. Moreover, care providers must be able to lead by example through their behaviour, exhibition of values and religious and cultural practices.

Parents in Direct Provision are unable to care for or govern the rules and customs of their family and the upbringing of their children due to the restrictions of living in centres. Direct Provision is an unnatural family environment that is not conducive to positive development in children.

State Sanctioned Child Poverty and Exclusion, The case of children in state accommodation for asylum seekers

As of July 2018 there were 1,485 children in the Direct Provision system.