Protests continue in Rosslare today over proposed International Protection Centre

A protest is taking place at Rosslare Europort today over plans by the Government to open a new centre to accommodate international protection applicants at the former Great Southern Hotel in Rosslare.

The organisers have said that the purpose of the protest is to disrupt traffic to and from the Port.

Both Stena Line and Brittany Ferries have scheduled dockings at the port today.

Local representatives, who are opposed to the plans to establish the centre for international protection applicants at the former Great Southern Hotel, say that the area is at saturation point.

There are already in the region of 300 International protection applicants being housed in the area. The next phase of the plan will see up to 400 applicants housed on the site of the old hotel.

They say local schools are full, there is one GP and no adequate bus service.

The site had originally been earmarked as a nursing home which locals say is much needed for the ever increasing ageing population and would also see jobs delivered to the area.

Locals have maintained a 24 hour protest at the site of the old hotel since Wednesday, as well as a picket outside Wexford County Council buildings yesterday.

Last Wednesday at a meeting with locals, Minister for Integration Roderic O’Gorman, highlighted the pressures faced in trying to house up to 25,000 international protection applicants that are already here in Ireland and further pressure from a steady stream still arriving into the country.

Local resident Niamh Dennis spoke to South East Radio News from todays protest:

“We are here now in Rosslare Europort and we are peacefully marching into the port, so that Minister O Gorman listens to the people of Rosslare Harbour, Kilrane and surrounding areas. That we do not consent to another IPAS centre in the area and that we get our much wanted, needed and promised nursing home.”

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