Renua is calling for a ‘national conversation’ on the steps that should be taken to encourage Irish emigrants to return home. Following on from our recent ‘ Bring Them Home’ Conference the party believes that the Global Irish Diaspora Strategy set out in 2015 needs to be expanded to deal more comprehensively with the issues facing people that wish to return home and that the best way to do this is through the creation of a Government White Paper on the topic
Since the economic recession we have seen immensely high levels of emigration as Irish citizens moved all over the world in search of better lives. Ireland’s recovery, albeit partial, from this recession means that we can, and should, start debating what steps should be taken to attract these people back to their homes. The people who left are predominantly young, educated, and attracting them home will have a positive impact on Ireland both economically and socially.
Renua believes that there are a number of steps that the country should take to draw Irish emigrants back to this country, and that these steps should be implemented in conjunction with an increased focus on developing links to the Irish diaspora. We believe that the major issues that face deter emigrants from returning are: lack of jobs, particularly in rural areas; taxation; our high cost of living; and the housing crisis, and these are issues that Renua is very dedicated to solving. However, there are a host of smaller issues, which could be more easily, and more immediately, fixed, that also serve to disincentivize the return of our sons and daughters.
Issues as simple as: embassies not being properly stocked with information, or capable of informing members of the diaspora interested in returning home of the support systems and entitlements in place for them if they return, particularly with relation to insurance, mental health, and banking; placing restrictions upon the ability of returning emigrants to build housing near their traditional homes; returning emigrants unable to avail of the same educational and social supports that any other citizen would have available to them; and inadequate systems for allowing an emigrant’s partner to naturalise, following sensible checks designed to minimise misuse of the system.
Moving forward it appears that people will be ever more easily able to move from country to country, and putting in place systems which allow Irish citizens to easily move freely to, and from, other countries, without having to worry that they are seen as less than citizens by the Irish state, will enable Irish citizens to go further and achieve more, whilst knowing that they will always have a home in Ireland, and that they will, one day, be welcomed back.