Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on the Irish Overseas and Diaspora, Senator Mark Daly has said that a new sense of urgency is needed from the Irish Government as 50,000 Undocumented Irish once again spend Christmas on their own, and fearful of deportation, in the United States.

Senator Daly was commenting following the election of Donald Trump as President-Elect by the Electoral College.

As we all know, while a candidate, President-Elect Trump made numerous commitments to deport undocumented immigrants living in the US. This has raised serious concerns among the Irish communities. They face an uncertain Christmas and need the Irish Government to up its lobbying on Capitol Hill.

“A new President has been elected, a new administration is being put together, and a new Congress will be sworn in come January.”

“The Irish Government must increase its outreach to the hundreds of new members of the House of Representatives, new Senators and new members of the Trump Cabinet. Irish people living in America cannot go through another Christmas of worry and fear.”

“This issue does not just affect the Undocumented; it also affects their parents, siblings and other family members. We estimated that approximately 500,000 people in Ireland are affected by the lack of progress on immigration reform in the United States,” said Daly who is the Chair of the Ireland America Association.

“I have been consistently calling for the Government to seek a provision whereby people should be given access to a humanitarian visa to allow them to return to Ireland to be with family members in times of distress, illness or bereavement. I will continue to pursue this issue in 2017.”

“While this issue is of course magnified at Christmas time, given that it a time for year for families to come together, it is essential that this issue remains high on the Government agenda at all times. Moreover, it is imperative that the Irish Government works with the incoming administration and makes a concerted and sustained effort to ensure that there is genuine progress on this issue’.

‘I will continue to raise awareness of this issue and I hope that 2017 will be the year in which we finally secure a satisfactory outcome for the undocumented Irish and their families,” concluded Daly.