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Question

357. Deputy Michael McNamara asked the Minister for Justice and Equality if there will be an opportunity to make submissions to her on the recommendations put forward by the working group, before the recommendations are considered by her and approved by the Cabinet, on the protection process and the direct provision system; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [25851/15]

358. Deputy Michael McNamara asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the date the working group report on improvements to the protection process and the direct provision system is expected to be published; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [25852/15]

Answer

Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I propose to take Questions Nos. 357 and 358 together.
The Independent Working Group to report to Government on what improvements should be be made to the protection process, including Direct Provision and supports for asylum seekers, was set up in October 2014 under the Chairmanship of former High Court Judge, Dr. Bryan McMahon. Its membership was drawn from a range of interests in the international protection area including UNHCR, non-governmental organisations, protection applicants, academia, and relevant Government Departments and Offices. The Report of the Working Group was submitted to Government today and is being published this afternoon. The Report is being published in the first instance to allow for as wide an audience as possible to absorb its content and recommendations. As with any Report of this nature it is open to any interested parties to comment on the Report and its recommendations.