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Integration and Social Cohesion in the Republic of Ireland$
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Bryan Fanning

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780719084782

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: July 2012

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719084782.001.0001

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Integration as social inclusion

Integration as social inclusion

(p.127) 7 Integration as social inclusion
Integration and Social Cohesion in the Republic of Ireland

Bryan Fanning

Manchester University Press

Ireland's first major immigration policy statement, Integration: A Two Way Process (2000) advocated the integration of refugees and immigrants into Irish society through employment promotion measures and through addressing specific barriers of discrimination, non-recognition of qualifications and lack of fluency in English. The repertoire of barriers to labour market participation was well known by 2000. Since 2000, various welfare reforms had undermined the welfare rights of many vulnerable migrants. No reference was made to the 2004 legislation that introduced a two-year habitual residence condition for eligibility to many core benefits, including children's allowances. This chapter examines the ‘family resemblance’ between integration goals and social inclusion goals within mainstream Irish social policy. It looks at the legal and cognitive barriers that foster the exclusion of migrants from mainstream thinking about social inclusion. Drawing on the examples of the former asylum seekers who make up much of Ireland's disproportionately marginal black population and of vulnerable migrants excluded from welfare safety nets, the chapter argues that such state-sanctioned contradictory thinking works to sabotage integration and future social cohesion.

Keywords:   Ireland, immigration, integration, social inclusion, immigrants, social cohesion, welfare, refugees, social policy, asylum seekers

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