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13th May 2022

€400 monthly payment for households who take in Ukrainian refugees approved

Katy Brennan

Households will have to wait a few months for a first payment.

Households hosting Ukrainian refugees will now be given a monthly payment of €400, it has been confirmed.

Coalition leaders and Ministers made the decision on Thursday evening at a sub-committee meeting, during which accommodation and education for refugees were discussed.

The agreement was made pending full Cabinet approval, which will likely happen early next week.

However, legislation will need to be passed before payments can be processed – something that could take several months, according to a senior source.

It is expected the Revenue or the Department of Social Protection will issue the payment.

The payment will be given equally to all households regardless of property type – whether it’s a large house or an apartment and is designed to help with the overall cost of the process, including utility bills.

Ministers have also agreed to speed up the Garda vetting process for households who offer a place.

It comes as the Government is struggling to find suitable accommodation for those who have fled the war.

More than half of the accommodation pledges initially made for refugees in Ireland have not been fulfilled.

Earlier this month, Liam O’Dwyer from the Irish Red Cross appeared on Newstalk explaining why some people may have reconsidered their offer.

“When people make a pledge – we would have experienced this before when we began the pledges database for the Syrian refugees… what happens is people immediately say ‘Yeah, this is something we’d really like to do’,” he said.

“And they say ‘Actually we’ve thought about it now, and no we’re not going to go ahead’. And then others, just the phone isn’t answered – and we can’t move ahead unless there is an actual response from the person.”

Since Russia launched its invasion on Ukraine in February, more than 26,000 Ukrainians have arrived in Ireland.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin recently confirmed that a cap will not be put on the numbers arriving in Ireland.