Passport production to be deemed as essential service

There is a backlog of 89,000
Passport production to be deemed as essential service

New proposals will see passport production deemed as an essential service in a bid to clear an estimated backlog of 89,000 applications.

The plans will be brought to Cabinet on Thursday morning by Minister for Foreign Affairs Simon Coveney.

The Irish Times report that the memo will ask Ministers to note that since March 2020, 428,000 passport applications have been processed by passport office staff.

This includes 45,000 this year, 3,500 of which were for emergency reasons.

Mr Coveney will ask Cabinet to designate passport production an essential service to help with clearing the large backlog.

The 89,000 backlog includes 44,000 domestic applications and 45,000 from outside the State.

A large number of these applications are Brexit related.

Speaking in the Dáil last week, Fine Gael TD Neale Richmond said for many “it has got nothing to do with travel” but rather “the passport is a vital piece of identification in this State”.

Mr Richmond added that some people were stuck in “absolute limbo” and “regardless of Level 5 restrictions, it is not good enough”.

He said a passport is not something that should be “afforded to people”, adding: “It is their right.”

 

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