Ireland Supreme Court strikes down ban on asylum seekers working

Ireland Supreme Court strikes down ban on asylum seekers working

[JURIST] The Supreme Court of Ireland [official website] formally ruled in a unanimous decision on Friday that the complete employment ban [statute] on asylum seekers was unconstitutional.

Chief Justice Frank Clark [official profile] said [Irish Times report] the ban is no longer a part of the law. The legislature has four months to create a work permit for asylum seekers.

The plaintiff was a Rohingya asylum seeker.

The decision follows a May 2017 opinion, where the court unanimously ruled [opinion] that the ban was unconstitutional “in principle.” The opinion, by Justice Donal O’Donnell [official bio], reads:

I have concluded that a right to work at least in the sense of a freedom to work or seek employment is a part of the human personality and accordingly the Article 40.1 requirement that individuals as human persons are required be held equal before the law, means that those aspects of the right which are part of human personality cannot be withheld absolutely from non-citizens.

At that time, the court gave the legislature six months to amend the statute. The case was then reheard in November.

The rights of refugees is an issue around the world. Last week Amnesty International accused [JURIST report] Australia of continued refugee abuses at Manus Island detention center. In December the EU referred [JURIST report] the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland to the Court of Justice for not accepting their quotas of refugees. That same month, the US ended [JURIST report] participation in the UN’s global compact on migration.