Press Centre

Obama takes action for undocumented people in the US – Mr Kenny, it’s your turn!

Media Release Thursday 20th November 2014

Tonight, President Obama will announce sweeping immigration reforms which will assist up to 6 million undocumented people, including a substantial number of the estimated 50,000 Irish undocumented migrants living in the US.

Migrant Rights Centre Ireland (MRCI) is calling on Enda Kenny to bring in similar measures for the undocumented migrants in Ireland.

Edel McGinley, MRCI Director, stated “Undocumented people in Ireland face the same struggles, the same challenges, the same sacrifices as the undocumented Irish in the US. We estimate that there are up to 26,000 undocumented adults and children living in Ireland today, and they are in the exact same legal limbo as undocumented migrants in the US.”

“Increasingly, undocumented families are here long-term – living here, working here, and making a very positive contribution to Irish life. It’s time for Irish politicians to look at immigration reform closer to home,” Ms McGinley concluded.

Jayson Montenegro, an undocumented migrant who has lived and worked in Ireland for over 10 years, said “Earlier this year, my father died suddenly. If I had travelled to the funeral, I would never have been able to return to my home in Ireland. So I had to watch his funeral on Skype and comfort my family over the phone. I am exactly the same as an undocumented Irish man in America.”

Next Wednesday, MRCI will launch ground-breaking new research into the lives and demographics of undocumented families living in Ireland.


Edel McGinley is available for interview

Contact: Aoife Murphy, MRCI Communications 086 3687901

Notes to Editor

New research conducted with hundreds of undocumented migrants in Ireland will be launched next Wednesday (Nov 26th) at 10.30am in Buswell’s Hotel on Molesworth Street. Undocumented migrants will be available for interview. For more info contact Aoife at 086 3687901 or

MRCI has worked with undocumented migrants in Ireland since 2001 and has developed a comprehensive proposed Earned Regularisation Scheme, similar to the US legislation for which successive Irish governments have lobbied.