More than 7,800 undocumented migrants have applied to gain regular legal status in Ireland through a scheme that was launched earlier this year.
Ireland launched the Regularisation of Long Term Undocumented Migrants scheme in January. This scheme provided a window until July 31 for all undocumented migrants to become legal citizens, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
According to Info Migrants, despite the high number of applicants, not everyone qualified. It has been estimated that there are 17,000 undocumented migrants in Ireland, including 3,000 children.
The Undocumented Migrants Scheme, which closed on July 31, offered regularisation for all those who had lived in Ireland for at least four years and who had no immigration status. Info Migrants explains that the threshold for those with children was lowered to three years.
Moreover, the same source noted that those who had applied for asylum and had spent at least two years waiting for a final decision on their application were permitted to apply for permission to live and work in Ireland too.
Under the scheme, undocumented migrants receive the so-called stamp four permits, which grants two years of legal status as well as renews if the applicant meets all the criteria. This means that ultimately, the programme could result in naturalisation.
The Department of Justice revealed that almost 1,500 people have already completed the process as well as have received their papers. On the other hand, over 6,300 0thers are still waiting for their applications to be processed.
Back when the scheme was launched, the Minister of Justice of Ireland, Helen McEntee, said that it would bring certainty to those who are already living and contributing in Ireland.
“It will bring some much-needed certainty and peace of mind to thousands of people who are already living here and making a valuable contribution to our society and the economy, many of whom may be very vulnerable due to their current immigration circumstances,” McEntee stated.
Additionally, McEntee said that there are also economic benefits for beneficiaries who are granted access to the labour market and for Ireland in terms of increased tax yields and social security contributions
Previously, SchengenVisaInfo.com reported that Ireland would introduce new changes to the Employment Permit System for foreign workers.
The Irish authorities said that the changes to the system would help to create a more responsive system to address labour market, introduce new seasonal work permits as well as an index for salary thresholds, and revise the labour market test process.
The official bill on the Employment Permit System for foreign workers will be implemented this fall.
SOURCE: Schengen Visa Info