Ireland Must Act on 1,500 Unaccompanied Children in Calais

Published date: 
30 Oct 2016




Ireland Must Act on 1,500 Unaccompanied Children in Calais


The founder of the Immigrant Council of Ireland, Sister Stanislas Kennedy, has today (Sunday October 30th) again called on Taoiseach, Enda Kenny, TD to act on the dire circumstances facing unaccompanied child refugees in Calais. This call is supported by ICTU, the Children's Rights Alliance and advocacy group, 'Not On Our Watch'. 


Sr. Stanislas said "Over the last week, the authorities in France had disputed claims by volunteers that, following the demolition of the camp in Calais, more than a thousand unaccompanied children were still there. Last night, President of France, Francois Hollande, acknowledged that 1,500 at risk children are still in Calais. Unaccompanied, they are housed in containers. This should shock every citizen of Europe to their core. On Friday I and others said that the disagreement between France and Britain about who was responsible for these children meant our government should offer immediately to assist by taking 200 of those at risk. There can now be no disputing the scale of the need, or its urgency and the longer Ireland stands quietly in the shadows the more shame we bring on ourselves. One last time therefore I call on the Taoiseach, a self professed European, to act. The EU was established, first and foremost, as a community of nations. Ireland needs to act as a mature and caring member of that community; move to assist vulnerable children and in the process demonstrate solidarity with France and Britain."


This call is made by,


Immigrant Council of Ireland (Press contact: Martina Quinn 087 6522033)


ICTU (Patricia King / Joan McCrohan 087 2161707)


The Children's Rights Alliance (Tanya Ward - 087 6531069 / Emma McKinley 087 6559067)


'Not On Our Watch' (Gary Daly - 087 2831178 / Caoimhe Butterly 087 0965806)