News & Media

Govt should regularise legal status of undocumented frontline care workers

13 May 2020

Statement by Seán Sherlock TD
Parliamentary Party Chair and Spokesperson on Social Protection, Community and Rural Development and the Islands; Agriculture and the Marine

Labour spokesperson on Justice, Seán Sherlock TD, has called on the Government to commit to regularising the legal status of undocumented migrant workers who are carrying out essential frontline care services during the Covid crisis.

Deputy Sherlock raised the issue with Minister Flanagan in the Dáil this evening.

Deputy Sherlock said:

“Many undocumented workers have stepped up and continued to provide essential care services during this crisis.

“But as a result of their legal status, there is a real concern that they are at increased risk of exploitation by their employers or landlords and may be reluctant to seek medical help or contact the Gardai for fear of deportation.

“This is obviously of particular concern during the current public health emergency.

“The services provided by these workers are valuable and there is a broad base of support for the regularisation of undocumented people from the public, business, civil society and across all major political parties in Ireland.

“While I welcome assurances from the Minister in the Dail this evening that undocumented persons should not be concerned about seeking medical attention during the Covid crisis, I am calling on the Government to commit to regularising the legal status of those undocumented persons currently carrying out essential frontline services as care workers.”