Transgender asylum seekers to be provided with new accommodation services
The Minister for Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth, Roderick O’Gorman has announced that the International Protection Accommodation Services (IPAS) is to develop a new LGBTI+ Resident Policy which will include accommodation provisions specifically designed for transgender persons.
Minister O’Gorman says that the new policy “will form part of an ongoing reform of IPAS operations and is part of a series of changes within IPAS to place the welfare of all residents, including LGBTI+ residents, at the centre of operational decisions.”
According to a statement issued by the Minister, the policy “will seek to ensure all new protection applicants are accommodated and supported in a way that fully takes into account the many diverse reception needs encountered among new arrivals.”
Minister O’Gorman went on to note that as Government works to end Direct Provision, it is vital that LGBTI+ applicants are supported while applying for International Protection. He also stated that it is his ambition for LGBTI+ accommodation to “always be a safe space.”
Minister O’Gorman said he is calling on LGBTI+ applicants, their advocates and the NGOs working in the field, to contact him on how best to develop this new policy.
The International Protection Accommodation Services (IPAS) says it is also currently reviewing all of its operational policies to identify areas where there may still be gaps in terms of formally outlining “how we meet the needs of our very diverse range of customers.”
The Ministers Statement concluded by noting that a new IPAS website is expected to go live in early July and all operational policies developed to date will be published on that website.