Additional accommodation has been announced for asylum seekers in Galway, Dublin, and Cork, to assist with social distancing in direct provision centres.
The news has been welcomed by Green Party Galway City West councillor, Pauline O'Reilly, who is also the party spokesperson on Foreign Affairs. However she said the delay in taking this action was unacceptable, coming, as it does, "weeks after the rest of the population has been asked to social distance".
Cllr O'Reilly described direct provision as "a pressure cooker and the very worst environment for social distancing". She said this is exacerbated by the fact that support workers cannot now enter direct provision centres, and that "people are living with others who they have not chosen to be with".
She said: "It highlights all that is wrong with this system of accommodation for those who seek our help as the flea from difficult circumstances."