617. Deputy Jennifer Whitmore asked the Minister for Justice if she will consider reducing the frequency of presentations required by those facing deportation to immigration services on a monthly or bimonthly basis in view of the decision by the Taoiseach not to deport persons during Covid-19 other than for national security issues; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [3541/21]
Minister for Justice (Deputy Helen McEntee): The enforcement of a deportation order is an operational matter for the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB). For the purpose of enforcing the Order, the person is required to present at the offices of the GNIB, either at the Burgh Quay office in Dublin, or at their local Immigration Office. They may be directed to attend at specified times on specific dates until such time as the deportation process has been completed.
GNIB issue what are referred to as presentation letters on a regular basis to people who are subject to a Deportation Order, to ensure continued engagement and to keep them up to date on their requirements to present in person, as enshrined in legislation. The issuance of presentation letters is an operational matter for the Garda Commissioner and in which I have no direct role.
However, I can assure the Deputy that both my own Department and the GNIB are taking a pragmatic approach in relation to the enforcement of Deportation Orders during the current COVID-19 pandemic. This is evidenced by the low number of deportations actually carried out during this time.
It should also be noted that, in line with the clear commitments both I and the Taoiseach have given, no Deportation Orders are being enforced during the pandemic at present, except in circumstances where there are national security or serious public policy concerns.