The Irish Refugee Council and the Immigrant Council of Ireland together set up the Refugee and Immigration Practitioners Network in order to bring together a range of practitioners working in the areas of asylum and immigration. The RIPN holds monthly meetings which are well attended by solicitors, barristers, NGO workers, caseworkers, etc. The meetings address a wide range of topics, depending on what matters are topical at the time and what High Court judgments have been recently issued or Department policy changes implemented. The meetings are usually held in the Law Society and are a very helpful way of keeping up to date with the constant changes in the area of Immigration and asylum.
The most recent RIPN meeting, on Tuesday 25th January 2011, addressed the following topics:
- New Student Regime
- Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/transgender asylum claims
- The Humanitarian Leave to Remain/Subsidiary Protection applications issue - we heard that the Department of Justice is currently deciding both applications, usually by the same decision maker simultaneously and often the HLTR application first. A number of High Court challenges have been brought regarding the non independent nature and predetermination of the Subsidiary Protection in contravention of the European Community Protection Regulations of 2006.
The meeting was well attended and generated a lot of discussion and sharing of information regarding the above topics.
The RIPN should be commended on their good work. We look forward to attending further meetings in the future and posting more updates on changes and developments in this area.