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Abolish Direct Provision

As someone who was born in Ireland and who lived in a very progressive household, will never know the trauma of being forced from a country because of persecution. The people who face this nightmare situation daily are those seeking asylum in Ireland, and as an ally, must do everything can to empower and support them. Asylum seekers and refugees are cursed to live in Direct Provision - a system that has no regard for the convention on human rights - a system that, after 20 years, continues to treat asylum seekers and refugees like animals.

When living in Direct Provision you have no life. The stories have heard over the last year are stories can never forget. You cannot work, study or do what you love because Direct Provision is no different from the prison system.

On November 25, our campaign will be sending a team of activists to Geneva to rally for the END of Direct Provision at the UN CERD Conference. The CERD group is a body of independent experts who monitor implementation of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination by its State parties. All State parties are obliged to submit regular reports to the Committee on how rights are being implemented.

This is a call to action - do whatever you can to support our campaign and the abolishment of Direct Provision. Together as a community we can make the government listen.

That is why our reporting process and your voice is so important, so please fill in our CERD questionnaire.

To elaborate:

CERD Report

CERD examines each State every five years. The Irish Government is required to implement CERD recommendations within that time.

Based on the Geneva hearing, the CERD committee prepares a new report. It addresses concerns and recommendations to each State in the form of “concluding observations”.

Government Report

The Government is required to submit its report regularly to the committee. The Government Report should outline the legislative, judicial, policy and other measures they have taken to give effect to the Convention.

First, the government publishes a draft report to the public and asks for responses from organisations and individuals. Then, it revises the draft and submits the final report to CERD.

Parallel Reports

Civil Society Reports

Civil society voices its concerns and contributes to the examination. Collective reports usually have a stronger impact. ENAR Ireland is coordinating the Collective Report in 2019 for submission to CERD in autumn.

National Human Rights Institution’ Report

At the same time IHREC is preparing their report to CERD.

Geneva Hearing

The CERD committee meets in Geneva and examines Ireland by looking at all the reports mentioned and based on this examination CERD prepares its new report on the State.

CERD needs evidence-based information from civil society about how well Ireland is meeting its obligations.

The Convention has a significant impact on national legislation. Many States have adopted policies and plans against racism outlawing hate crime and racial discrimination in the workplace, or in the provision of services.

The CERD reporting system has prompted individual States to enact anti-racism legislation or amend existing laws.

To fill in the CERD questionnaire, visit www.enarireland.org/CERD19.

This article appears in the 358 Issue of GCN

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This article appears in the 358 Issue of GCN