Rights of undocumented Irish must be priority in all engagements with U.S. administration

I believe that an all-out diplomatic assault by An Taoiseach, and all Ministers, travelling to the United States for St. Patrick’s Day is of the utmost importance to protect the undocumented Irish living there.


“There are many families across Cavan and Monaghan who have relatives living in the U.S. who are undocumented. The painful reality of this situation is that those undocumented Irish are often unable to return home to Ireland for family weddings and funerals.


“With the current U.S. administration taking an increasingly tough stance against undocumented persons, it is vital that all possible action is taken by the Government to advocate for the undocumented Irish in America. For many of those in such a situation in the U.S., they live in fear of being deported from the lives they have worked for and built over there. Furthermore, their undocumented status limits the number of occupations they can work in.


“The rights of the undocumented Irish, many of whom hail from Cavan and Monaghan, must be at the forefront of all discussions on Capital Hill and in the White House this St. Patrick’s Day. Furthermore, it must be an issue which remains our top priority in all of our engagements with our U.S. counterparts.


“Our Government must be proactive in advocating for the undocumented, many of whom are now living with a great deal of uncertainty and fear, and without the option of returning to Ireland to visit loved ones.


“With President Trump’s obvious focus on immigration, it is now more important than ever that we do our utmost to protect our citizens, who are living in America, and who have undocumented status. As such, I have urged all Ministers travelling to the U.S. for St. Patrick’s Day to use the opportunity to implement an all-out diplomatic assault to ensure the needs, and rights, of the undocumented Irish receive the full attention of their U.S. counterparts.”

Senator Joe O'Reilly representing Cavan & Monaghan 2010. | An ExSite website