Minister Dermot Ahern Proposes Dáil debate on undocumented Irish in the United States
The Minister for Foreign Affairs, Mr Dermot Ahern TD, today warmly welcomed the decision to have a debate in Dáil Éireann next week on the undocumented Irish in the United States.
This follows the tabling of a draft motion with the Chief Whip's office by the Minister which supports the Kennedy / McCain Bill on immigration reform. That Bill, if passed by the US Congress, would allow undocumented people, including Irish, in the United States to apply for temporary residency status with a possible path to permanent residency.
The Minister said: “We know about the plight of the undocumented Irish in the United States. An all-party Dáil motion would voice the support of the Irish people, through their elected representatives, for the positive approach to this important issue proposed by Senator Kennedy and Senator McCain. I believe the issue of undocumented Irish people in the United States is of the highest concern to the Government and to the Oireachtas.
“The all-party motion is scheduled for the Dáil next week. This follows directly from important discussions which a delegation led by the Ceann Comhairle, Dr Rory O' Hanlon, TD, had on Capitol Hill in Washington recently. These included a meeting with Senator John McCain, the joint sponsor with Senator Edward Kennedy, of a bill on immigration reform. This bill is strongly supported by the Government and, if passed into law, would significantly improve the situation of the undocumented Irish in the United States.
“In summary, next week's debate in Dáil Éireann will be a most positive reflection of the endorsement and support of the Oireachtas, representing the Irish people, for the Kennedy / McCain bill.”
The debate will take place on Thursday, 6th October 2005.
29th September 2005