The Burkean –

This is the second of a series of exposés on the effect of the establishment’s mass-asylum policy on the most vulnerable groups in Irish society. For part one about how the policy is affecting young people and students you can find it here

The last few years have not been kind to Irish nursing homes, with a lack of funding, lack of workers, increasing costs due to inflation and the effects of lockdowns, on top of an increased demand due to an ageing population, the result is dire. These conditions have led to 48 nursing homes all around the country deregistering with HIQA and closing since 2018 with more currently in the process of closing. 

But what is being done with these nursing homes when they close down? Through our own investigative research as well as through tip-offs from the general public, we can announce that many of these nursing homes are now being used to house Ukrainian refugees in some cases, and “Ukrainian” refugees in others. We will detail 4 of these cases in this article.

This situation has started to raise alarm bells with people around the country and there have been many news reports in local areas about what is happening. In response to some of these stories, the CEO of nursing homes Ireland Tadgh Daly assured people that “There’s no nursing home closing to become a centre for refugees. Nursing homes are closing because they are being forced to close”. 

However, according to an article from WLRFM – which came out before the article where the above quote was taken – stated that: “nursing homes Ireland have told WLR that they know of at least one private operator who has de-registered their nursing home and has since accommodated those seeking refuge from the war in Ukraine –for which the government will pay them.”

Moreover, the Minister For Older People Mary Butler has confirmed that nursing homes are closing and housing Ukrainians as it is more lucrative due to more financing from the government saying that some nursing home providers are deciding to end their business as nursing home providers and “are looking at providing accommodation for Ukrainian refugees, which can be more lucrative”. 

That is to say, some providers appear to be applying to the government to have their contracts changed from housing elderly people to housing Ukrainians or refugees of other backgrounds, and the government is dutifully complying and paying them more money to do so. 

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The Burkean