East Wall residents come together in 'anti-protest group'

Lunchtime Live host Andrea Gilligan attended the protest on Wednesday at the invitation of some the participants
Jack Quann
Jack Quann

17.59 1 Dec 2022

Share this article

East Wall residents come toget...

East Wall residents come together in 'anti-protest group'

Jack Quann
Jack Quann

17.59 1 Dec 2022

Share this article

A number of residents in the East Wall area of Dublin have come together to protest protests against asylum seekers being housed there.

Concerned residents said they were not consulted by the Government when it decided to use a former ESB office building to house asylum seekers.

Lunchtime Live host Andrea Gilligan attended the protest on Wednesday at the invitation of some the participants.



View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Newstalk (@newstalkfm)

One man said he was there to protest the Government's handling of it, rather than the issue itself.

"To be honest I don't support the protests," he said.

"I think there are genuine concerns among the local community around housing, around access to healthcare and access to childcare.

"The genuine concerns don't include rape and murder and all the kind of horrific things you've been hearing here through megaphones.

"It's absolute lies, and it's horrific.

"The people with genuine concerns are also the people who are bussed in under the dead of night and are running from various conflict zones or problems around the world."

"I'm not here to join the protest, I'm here to give an alternate voice.

"The Government didn't handle it well, the Government moved these people in in the dead of night without talking to the community, without getting them onboard - and that was a massive mistake".

'We can't have an open debate'

Another protester said she feels people cannot even have a discussion about the issue.

"I'm really uncomfortable with the whole thing, I think it's just so wrong," she said.

"I also think there's something going wrong in society that we can't have an open debate about people coming into this country.

"What's our immigration policy; what is our policy in terms of people coming into the country?

"If we can't have a debate, or disagree or agree on certain topics, where does that leave us as a society - that we can't have an honest to God conversation with one another without being branded a racist?"

She said there should be a more open approach to it all.

"The saddest thing about all this is that these individuals were bussed in at night time - why were they bussed in at night time?

"From the humane point of view, the humiliation of it all.

"Why do they need to come into a derelict office building in makeshift rooms?"

Another local resident, Heather, said a number of people have formed a community group against the protests.

"[We] really have a growing concern about the protest," she said.

"We're really saddened by the fear and lies and the misinformation that's being spread, and using the protest as a vehicle for that.

"We really are just open to encourage people to come out and speak about what's going on.

"We're open to having residents join in the group to speak up, and most importantly we want to welcome people who are seeking asylum into the area.

"Often communities can feel like they have been left totally in the dark often as a result of the systemic under-resourcing.

"One of the things that our group is invested in is ensuring we receive the right funding to help us become adequately resourced for all of the integration that's really needed," Heather added.

Main image: A sign seen at protests against asylum seekers in Dublin's East Wall. Picture via Twitter/@andreagilligan

Share this article

Read more about

Anti-protest Asylum Seekers East Wall Lunchtime Live Protests

Most Popular