September 11 Digital Archive: XML Document
Title:A cash boost for immigrant groups
Body:Speculation is mounting within the Irish community that the Irish government will invest significant funding into U.S.-based immigrant advice centers as part of a worldwide strategy to cater to the concerns of Irish citizens abroad.
The U.S. branch of a task force set up by the Irish government in October, will submit a report this week to the government advising them that the needs of Irish communities across America are not being met with current resources.
New York-based radio host Adrian Flannelly, one of the two members of the U.S. branch, told the Irish Voice that the immigrant community hoped their report would be received favorably.
For years we as immigrant advocates have been working on a shoestring trying to bring information to those who left Ireland for various reasons, Flannelly said. One of these is to let people who left Ireland under forced immigration in 1950s, know that as Irish citizens they have entitlements they know nothing about, entitlements they do not have in America.
These are retirement-age people who have things in Ireland they cannot get here. We are encouraging the Irish government to understand that while we appreciate all they have done, we need more money to facilitate more resources to inform the immigrant community about their status in the eyes of their country of birth, he added.
Getting the Irish government to take such concerns seriously has been a major step forward for Flannelly and his fellow task force member Monsignor James Murray, founder of Project Irish Outreach at the Archdiocese of New York.
Immigration advice for the Irish community has traditionally come from voluntary groups with small budgets and limited resources. Just getting them to realize they need to listen is huge, and we expect at the end of the summer at the very least, more funding to become available to the immigrant community, Flannelly said.