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Fiona Murphy
and
Ulrike M. Vieten

There is a growing interest as well as urgency to understand diversity, cultural differences and transformation on the island of Ireland. With the UK’s Brexit decision in summer 2016 the notion of the border, border crossing and what European Union membership entails for different groups in society have become even more opaque. This chapter examines the everyday life experiences of asylum seekers and refugees in both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Their experiences are differently fashioned through two distinct immigration systems, as well as two distinct national, historical and socio-economic contexts. This chapter considers how asylum seekers’ and refugees’ experiences of integration are shaped by issues such as racism and sectarianism in Northern Ireland and in the Republic of Ireland. It explores how local environments, spatial segregation and being a black immigrant in a largely white society condition feelings of belonging as well as future aspirations. The authors draw particular attention to the complex intersections of poor asylum processes, racism and exclusion.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands
Philip J. O’Connell

Less than 40 per cent of adult African nationals in Ireland are employed – far less than the average for Irish natives or for other immigrant groups. They also suffer much higher rates of unemployment than the national average. The pattern is similar in other European labour markets. This chapter explores the underlying reasons for African disadvantage in the Irish labour market. Previous research on immigrants in the Irish labour market suggests that the black African national–ethnic group suffers particular labour market disadvantages and is much more likely than either Irish natives or other immigrant groups to have experienced discrimination while looking for work. Discrimination may provide part of the explanation for the high unemployment rates among Africans participating in the labour force. Previous research also suggests that the severe disadvantages suffered by black Africans may be due in part to the fact that many black Africans in Ireland are refugees and would have spent an extended period of time excluded from the labour market as asylum seekers in the Direct Provision system, leading to a scarring effect on their future employment prospects. However, it is also necessary to consider the low labour force participation rates among Africans and to examine their characteristics (including gender, education and household structure), and barriers to labour force participation associated with those characteristics.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands
Bryan Fanning

The free movement of EU citizens and the absence of a hard border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland have facilitated easy movement across the island for many migrants. People born in EU countries, and those who have attained EU citizenship, are equally able to live and work on both sides of the border, and a growing number have family, community and employment connections in both jurisdictions. This chapter examines the emerging implications of the decision of the United Kingdom to leave the European Union (Brexit) for the lives of migrants on both sides of the border between the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. In Northern Ireland, reduced rights of residency and access to employment will directly affect EU migrants, while non-EU migrants are also affected by a shifting labour market heavily reliant on migrant workers. In the Republic, internal and external border controls agreed to facilitate EU protections and an ongoing relationship with the UK will have an impact on all migrants in their ability to move with ease, while the labour market also experiences significant shifts.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands
Patricia Brazil
,
Catherine Cosgrave
, and
Katie Mannion

In the Republic of Ireland, children have long been ancillary to immigration policy and decisions, with their specific needs and rights frequently overlooked. In 2016, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern at the current inadequacy of Ireland’s migration law framework to address the needs of migrant children. This chapter explores the impact of the absence of clear law and policy on children's lives. It considers the barriers to children obtaining immigration status and applying for citizenship. It focuses on the problems created by uncertainty around children's immigration status that extend into adulthood and place ceilings on opportunities, including restricting access to third-level education. Migrant children are not a homogeneous group and their individual lived experiences may be very different. The chapter draws on research carried out by the Immigrant Council in 2016 including consultation with 19 young people and 180 social workers, guardians ad litem, and other advocates and support workers, exploring the impact of immigration law, entitlement to naturalisation, access to education and employment, and migrant children’s disproportionate contact with the statutory care system.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands
Teresa Buczkowska
and
Bríd Ní Chonaill

This chapter focuses on immigrants’ experience of racism and racially motivated anti-social behaviour in social housing in the Republic of Ireland. In recent years the Immigrant Council of Ireland (ICI) has identified a notable increase in the number of reports of individuals and families experiencing racial harassment in their homes or in the vicinity compared with previous years. Almost half (48 per cent) of the incidents reported in housing took place in social housing. The findings of the quantitative and qualitative analysis of data gathered from the ICI’s Racist Incidents Support and Referral Service during 2013 and 2014 are presented in order to paint a detailed picture of the victims’ experiences of racism in social housing in Ireland. The second part of the chapter presents the findings of a case study analysing the policy and practice of one local authority where there has been a response to complaints of racism and an absence of data collection. The chapter demonstrates that the exclusion immigrants suffer is twofold: the immediate impact of harassment, and the insufficient institutional responses to it.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands
Bashir Otukoya

This chapter examines, from a Nigerian-Irish perspective, difficulties encountered by hyphenated citizens in their efforts to become accepted as belonging to the Irish nation. It examines rules and processes that remind immigrants who have become naturalised Irish citizens that they are still outsiders. The chapter also examines difficulties faced by hyphenated citizens in asserting their own ethnic identities. Hyphenated citizens are positioned in a precarious situation. One longs to be accepted into both one’s ‘home’ and host society, only to be met with questions of identity that conflict the mind. One’s longing to belong can never be satisfied, because for example, one is neither Irish, nor Nigerian, enough. One carefully threads along the blurred concept of ‘home’, unable to determine where ‘home’ is. Not at one’s own will of course, but because one’s self-assertion to a particular identity is met with enquiry from those who deem that identity theirs: ‘are you one of us?’ Drawing on the concept of ‘super-citizens’, the chapter interrogates the ways in which over-assimilation can facilitate both exclusion from one’s ‘home’ society and racism by the majority, undermining the cultural and ontological facilitators of integration.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands
Frances McGinnity
and
Merike Darmody

International research has highlighted the crucial role of schools in the integration of children. Schools reflect and transmit dominant cultural norms both explicitly through the curriculum and implicitly. In this context immigrant students are found to often occupy an ambiguous position within the Irish educational system, whether as ‘outsiders’ or as the children of comparatively highly educated parents in possession of the kinds of social and cultural capital valued by the school system. The ‘mismatch’, or cultural distance, between home and school cultures may vary across nationalities or linguistic groups as well as by social class. The chapter specifically focuses on factors that determine whether or not immigrants are seen as ‘outsiders’, such as English-language fluency, country of origin, immigrant status, location, and so on. It evidences how some groups of young people are particularly marginalised and experience exclusion in the Irish education system and beyond.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands

Immigrants as Outsiders in the Two Irelands examines how a wide range of immigrant groups who settled in the Republic of Ireland and in Northern Ireland from the 1990s are faring today. It asks to what extent might different immigrant communities be understood as outsiders in both jurisdictions.

Immigrants as Outsiders in the Two Irelands brings together research on a wide range of immigrant communities. The book provides a sharp contemporary account of integration that situates migrants’ diverse experiences of exclusion within a detailed overall picture of the range of ways in which they have succeeded socially, economically and politically in building their lives in Ireland and Northern Ireland. Chapters include analyses of the specific experiences of Polish, Filipino, Muslim, African, Roma, refugee and asylum seeker populations and of the experiences of children, as well as analyses of the impacts of education, health, employment, housing, immigration law, asylum policy, the media and the contemporary politics of borders and migration on successful integration.

Immigrants as Outsiders in the Two Irelands offers a unique cross-border perspective on migrants on the island of Ireland today which situates the Irish experience within the wider politics of migration control, Brexit and integration policy. This book is a significant and timely analysis suitable for students of migration at any level in a wide range of social science disciplines.

Bryan Fanning
and
Lucy Michael

Legislation and state policies aimed at addressing racism have evolved differently in the two Irelands. In the Republic both grew out of anti-racist activism concerned since the 1980s with anti-Traveller prejudice and, as immigration rose, out of NGO pressure upon the Irish state to address its responsibilities under the UN Convention on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. In Northern Ireland, legislative and institutional responses to racism were informed by UK practices, particularly as NGO advocates of anti-racism were influenced by mainland UK norms and debates. However, responses were later and weaker than elsewhere in the UK as gridlock in Northern Irish politics imposed limits on progressive social policy. This chapter traces the institutional failures to respond adequately to experiences of racism in both jurisdictions, the effectiveness of civil society responses to racism, and the leverage of international accountability to make progress. The chapter draws particular attention to the shape and strength of the NGO sector and its ability to effect change in the face of institutional resistance, as well as the impact of ‘hate crime’ frameworks.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands
Abstract only
Immigrants and other outsiders
Bryan Fanning
and
Lucy Michael

Immigrants as Outsiders in the Two Irelands offers contributions which speak to the full range of factors shaping new and available pathways to integration, from the context into which immigrants arrive, the characteristics of immigrant groups affecting their emigration and immigration, the biases and structural barriers they encounter in the host society, and the multiple ways in which they seek to adapt to and change the institutions which facilitate integration. Using the theory of segmented assimilation to frame these contributions, we establish a framework through which we invite our readers to view the successes and adaptations of the migrants represented here as well as the structural powerlessness with which many of them, but not all, are faced. We note the limited choices that attend ‘outsider’ status, and the impact of these economically, politically and culturally, and the ways in which combinations of ‘insider’ and ‘outsider’ positions affect integration, the ability of migrants (and children of migrants) to thrive, and their future orientations to the opportunities available on the island of Ireland.

in Immigrants as outsiders in the two Irelands