\"\"

Minister warns Irish to avoid becoming illegal in the U.S.as 100,000 emigrate

\"\"

Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs Micheal Martin is urging Irish people considering moving to the U.S. without correct documentation not to do so.

Martin, who recently lost his daughter to a sudden illness, said he has visited the undocumented community in the U.S. many times and has witnessed first hand the depths of sadness experienced by those who cannot visit home.

“It is not worth it in terms of quality of life and employment," said Martin on Monday.

“Many people have returned to Ireland but have not made it back to the U.S., with the consequent chaos and dislocation brought to their lives.”
Martin was responding to opposition party Fine Gael politician Paul Connaughton who said helping the undocumented in the U.S. was difficult.

“The problems are horrendous. A woman rang me from Washington the other day and she wanted to attend her mother’s funeral in Dublin. She is undocumented in the US," said Martin.

Martin said discussions are still underway in Washington to create more flexibility on the recently made available 12-month working visa which could lead to a more permanent position in the country.

While in New York in October Martin said that after a series of meetings on Capitol Hill, the Irish government was told that as of now, the only way to solve the problems facing the estimated 50,000 undocumented in the U.S. would be through a comprehensive reform package.

The minister said that the U.S. legislators he met – among them, Senators John McCain, Lindsey Graham and Patrick Leahy – expressed optimism that a comprehensive bill will be ready for introduction and action in the first three months of next year.

Martin also said that the government would continue to press for a bi-lateral visa deal between Ireland and the U.S. that would ensure a long-term flow of legal immigration between the two countries. However, he added that any such deal would have to come as part of comprehensive reform.

“We can’t go it alone,” Martin said with regards to a bi-lateral deal. “We have to be clear to our people that we can’t do it alone. If comprehensive doesn’t happen, we would then pursue (a bi-lateral) deal.”

COMMENTS

Log in with your social accounts:

Or, log in with your IrishCentral account:

Forgot your password ?

Don't have an account yet? Register now !

Join IrishCentral with your social accounts:


Already have an account ?

For Newsletter Subscribers – Draw for 1 Prize on December 31st.

Prize: Your Piece of Ireland – a Square of Land in the heart of the Glens of Antrim, Ireland

More details here (or you can buy a little piece of Ireland directly): http://bit.ly/1zew9ox

Terms & Conditions

Or, sign up for an IrishCentral account below:

By clicking above you are indicating that you have read & agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.


Make sure we gathered the correct information from you

By clicking above you are indicating that you have read & agree to our Terms and Privacy Policy.


You already have an account on IrishCentral! Please confirm you're the owner.


Our new policy requires our users to save a first and last name. Please update your account: