Category: Archive

Meanwhile, over here

February 17, 2011

By Staff Reporter

On a much smaller scale the government has recognized, and is now highlighting, the plight of thousands of Irish living and working in the United States without the full protection of legal immigrant status.
Dublin estimates an undocumented population of 20 to 25,000. Some would peg the figure higher, some lower.
Either way, there are thousands of Irish who are contributing to the economic growth of the United States, but from deep within the shadows of a legal limbo.
It would seem easy and logical for the undocumented to chuck in the towel and return to an Ireland that is crying out for workers.
But life isn’t so simple. Many undocumented Irish have put down deep roots in this country despite their lack of status. Some see a changed Ireland that is not to their liking.
Not a few have families. Some own their own companies. Some, whether immigration law recognizes it or not, have become Americans, de facto if not de jure.
With all this in mind, the Irish government’s substantially increased financial aid to immigration centers around the nation is to be welcomed.
The role for, and value of, the immigrant centers has never been more evident than it is now, particularly given the fact that prospects for early and rapid movement on reforming immigration law would appear to be stalled in a labyrinthine Washington.

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