Emergency International Protection Accommodation, East Wall Road

Fri, Nov 18, 2022

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As an emergency measure, in response to extraordinary pressure on the international protection system and a lack of available accommodation for international protection applicants, the former ESB office building on East Wall Road has been converted into an accommodation centre. Some information below based on the briefing provided by the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY) may be of interest to the local community. The Department will be circulating an information leaflet to all residents in the coming week.

Emergency International Protection Accommodation, East Wall Road


Almost 13,000 people have arrived in Ireland in 2022 seeking asylum. Many people are fleeing difficult and dangerous situations internationally, including war, poverty and the impacts of climate change. They have a legal right to claim asylum in Ireland and will have their applications assessed by the Department of Justice.

2022 represents a remarkable increase in the number of people who are seeking asylum in Ireland. Alongside the number of people coming to Ireland from Ukraine, there is extraordinary pressure on the system. This means that the Department of Children, Equality, Disability, Integration and Youth (DCEDIY) are looking for extraordinary solutions to provide safe and secure accommodation for people in the asylum process.

Access to suitable accommodation is severely constrained. Current projections indicate a shortfall of 15,000 beds by December as the number of Ukrainians and IP applicants arriving is expected to remain at elevated levels.  DCEDIY is working urgently across Government and with agencies, NGOs and local authorities to bring new accommodation on board to meet State’s humanitarian responsibilities. In addition, IPPS is sourcing vacant office buildings and state owned properties in order to increase available accommodation. A number of these projects are currently being progressed.

An exempted development regulation for the change of use of a wide repository of buildings has been drafted between DCEDIY and the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage and is due to be laid before the Houses shortly.   

Questions and Answers

How many individuals are intended to be accommodated there?

The capacity in Two Gateway Building, East Wall is 380 persons who are International Protection applicants. This will consist of a mixture of singles and families. Initially 80 singles have been moved in but families will follow in due course.

How long can individuals expect to stay there before moving on to more suitable accommodation?

It is not possible to say with certainty what the length of stay will be having regard to the ongoing crisis is the numbers of IP applicants arriving and the scarcity of more appropriate accommodation. This remains under review but we would note that the Department has recently closed for applications on the second phase of the 2022 tender process for additional accommodation and is now beginning to assess the applications.

What will the resident breakdown be at the building?

The layout of the facility is spread over five floors of accommodation which will be tailored towards singles (single males and single females) and family configurations (mothers, fathers and children). Families will be accommodated on different floors from singles accommodation and these floors will be access controlled. Catering at meal times for singles and families will also be separated by the provider.

What are the conditions at the site – what are the sleeping arrangements, toilets, showers, etc.? What are the catering arrangements for the building?

Accommodation is spread over 5 floors. Toilets and showers are located within the building and available all day long, and are segregated. Residents will be provided with 3 meals per day. Each resident will receive towels, toiletries and linen will be changed twice a week. The facility will have Wi-fi. Fire alarms and security cameras are fitted throughout the public walking areas.

Who are the owners and who are operating on site?

Gateway Integration Ltd have offered the building to the Department to assist in this emergency response. The Department has a licence agreement in place with Gateway Integration Ltd for the use of the building. Gateway Integration Ltd will operate the site.

How many staff are on site?

There will be a compliment of cleaners on site per day, 1 duty manager on site daily, a senior manager on call 24/7, security will be on site 24 hours a day.

What is the duration of the contract?

There is a contract in place with the provider to utilise the building for 12 months initially.

Is the building fire cert in place?

Yes, this has been provided to the Department. The Alarm and Detection system was last serviced on 29 March 2022. All staff will be trained as fire wardens, and the training will be kept up to date ensuring there is a fire warden present 24 hours per day.

How will people be accommodated on site and retain a degree of privacy?

There are five floors of accommodation. The occupancy of bedrooms ranges from mainly twin bedrooms, family rooms ranging from four up to six beds per room to a small number of dormitory style bedrooms sleeping up to 10 people.

How will IP applicants be provided with PPS numbers? Are some of them eligible to work?

PPSNs are provided through the Department of Social Protection. Applicants are eligible to work from 6 months after their arrival in Ireland. Most of the residents will be new arrivals. IPAS and NGO partners work directly with individuals to help them complete necessary paperwork.

What integration supports are available to provide linkages with the local community?

An integration fund is available to assist in linkages to local communities. A detailed guidance document to this fund an online application form is linked here. For queries, contact: ipss.transition.team@equality.gov.ie.IP applicants may avail of English language classes through the ETB. IPAS carry out resident clinics at all new and existing accommodation locations. IPAS work with a number of NGOs who provide support to residents in the form of clinics, and in addition there is a DCEDIY funded confidential NGO run helpline to assist with any queries a resident may have.

What other State agencies have been informed about the building?

Is any assessment provided to IP Applicants to ascertain their needs or vulnerabilities?

Yes. IPAS have a team working to provide vulnerability assessments. It should be noted that this team remains under considerable pressure in the context of high numbers of arrivals and opening of a high number of new emergency locations.

Why is IPAS considering using this building to accommodate people?

Given the significantly increased numbers of arrivals in the context of accommodation shortages the Department has no option but to consider all offers of accommodation.

Is Dublin 3 the only area considered for this type of accommodation, or have other areas in the city/country been examined? How many other centres like this are in operation?

Emergency centres have been opened in all parts of the country. There have been in excess of 40 accommodation locations utilised since January across 13 counties. In Dublin, similar sites have been or are currently in operation in Dublin 6, Dublin 11, Dublin 14, Dublin 22, and South County Dublin.

These options must be considered to prevent homelessness for the unprecedented numbers of people arriving seeking international protection and the severe lack of other types of accommodation currently.

Who is the contact person in IPAS to respond to any queries or issues?

IPAS operational queries and questions can be sent to ipasinbox@equality.gov.ie

Please put Gateway 2 in the subject line to ensure queries are directed appropriately.