137. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if a person (details supplied) can be re-accommodated in direct provision; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [48660/17]
Minister of State at the Department of Justice and Equality (Deputy David Stanton): The Reception and Integration Agency (RIA) of my Department offers accommodation and related services to those in the International Protection process. At the end of October 2017, RIA was accommodating over 4,800 persons and the effective vacancy rate was just over 2% of its overall capacity.
The focus of RIA at the present time is to offer these vacancies (while managing its overall portfolio) to those who are entering the process rather than making accommodation available to those who already have accommodation with colleagues or friends while their application for protection is being considered.
Due to on going pressure on the accommodation available to the Department it is not possible at this time to offer the person in question accommodation within the portfolio available to the Department.
This matter is of course under continuous review and should there be a material change in the level of accommodation available to us we will revisit the matter.