Vulnerable Childhood, Vulnerable Adulthood: Direct Provision as Aftercare for Aged-Out Separated Children Seeking Asylum in Ireland

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Title: Vulnerable Childhood, Vulnerable Adulthood: Direct Provision as Aftercare for Aged-Out Separated Children Seeking Asylum in Ireland
Authors: Ní Raghallaigh, Muireann
Thornton, Liam
Permanent link: http://hdl.handle.net/10197/8431
Date: 17-Feb-2017
Abstract: Ireland's approach to after-care for aged-out separated children is problematic. Currently, upon reaching the age of 18, most separated young people are moved to direct provision, despite the fact that the State can use discretionary powers to allow them to remain in foster care. Direct provision is the system Ireland adopts providing bed and board to asylum seekers, along with a weekly monetary payment. Separated young people in Ireland are in a vulnerable position after ageing out. Entry into the direct provision system, from a legal and social work perspective, is concerning. Utilising direct provision as a 'form of aftercare' emphasises Governmental policy preferences that privilege the migrant status of aged-out separated children, as opposed to viewing this group as young people leaving care. In this article, utilising a cross disciplinary approach, we provide the first systematic exploration of the system of aftercare for aged-out separated children in Ireland. In doing so, we posit two core reasons for why the aftercare system for aged-out separated children has developed as it has. First, doing so ensures that the state is consistent with its approach to asylum seekers more generally, in that it seeks to deter persons from claiming asylum in Ireland through utilisation of the direct provision system. Second, while the vulnerability of aged-out separated children is well-documented, the State (and others) ignore this vulnerability and are reluctant to offer additional aftercare supports beyond direct provision. This is due, we argue, to viewing aged-out separated children as having a lesser entitlement to rights than other care leavers, solely based on their migrant status.
Funding Details: Health Service Executive
Type of material: Journal Article
Publisher: Sage Publications
Copyright (published version): 2017 the Authors
Keywords: Ireland;Aftercare;Separated children;Direct provision;Asylum seekers;Law;Social work practice
DOI: 10.1177/0261018317691897
Language: en
Status of Item: Peer reviewed
Appears in Collections:Law Research Collection
Social Policy, Social Work and Social Justice Research Collection

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