RIA's AC13 Role

The Reception and Integration Agency’s role in assisting with the return of destitute citizens of certain EU States derives from a Government decision of 2 March, 2004 which directed that the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform support the return of destitute nationals from the 10 States which joined the EU in May, 2004 (the Accession Countries ‘AC’) on an agency basis for the Department of Social Protection. This function was introduced in the context of the introduction, with effect from 1 May 2004, of an Habitual Residency Condition in relation to access to social welfare payments.  This condition applies to all applicants for such payments and is not confined to European Union citizens.  This voluntary return process was later extended, on an administrative basis, to include the two States which joined in January, 2007 (Romania and Bulgaria) and Croatia, who joined the EU on the 1st July 2013 – hence the shorthand term ‘AC13’.  

The protocol for determination of destitution and referral for repatriation involves the Department of Social Protection (and its agents) and the Reception and Integration Agency. RIA does not itself determine whether the EU citizen is destitute.  Individuals are assessed and referred to RIA, in the main, by the Asylum Seeker and New Communities Unit (ASNCU) of the Department of Social Protection(Community Welfare Service) in Gardiner Street, Dublin.  The ASNCU deals with all non-Irish nationals who are not proper to their local Community Welfare Services in the former ERHA functional area. Referrals can be made from local community welfare officers and employment exchanges around the country, but this is rare. 

Referrals to RIA are made on an out-of-hours basis through the Homeless Persons Unit (HPU) and from Garda Stations (particularly Store Street and Pearse Street Stations in Dublin). The HPU is staffed by Community Welfare Officers from the Department of Social Protection and operates in tandem with Dublin City Council's out-of-hours service. Any persons referred to RIA for the purpose of AC13 repatriations through the HPU or Gardaí are referred to the ASNCU on the next working day for assessment of destitution and referred back to RIA if assessed as destitute and if willing to return home. 

RIA does not accept direct referrals from Embassies, third party or NGO groups, or by individuals themselves.

The role of RIA under this scheme is to provide voluntary transport back to their home State for destitute AC13 nationals. If absolutely necessary, and subject to availability of accommodation, RIA will accommodate the person(s) concerned for one or two nights in its designated Dublin centre and provide them with transport home as soon as is practicable and cost efficient. Those who have previously availed of the scheme will not be repatriated a second time, while those who fail to take a flight arranged for them will not be offered a second flight.

RIA does not have responsibility for housing homeless non-Irish nationals.

RIA AC13 Annual Statistics Report 2016 (PDF 28.9kb) 

RIA AC13 Annual Statistics 2015 (PDF. - 37.7KB).

RIA AC13 Annual Statistics 2014 9PDF-48.2KB)

RIA AC13 Annual Statistics 2013 (PDF - 36KB)

RIA AC12 Annual Statistics 2012 (PDF - 152KB)

RIA AC12 Annual Statistics 2011 (PDF - 147KB)

RIA AC12 Annual Statistics 2010 (PDF - 24KB)

RIA AC12 Annual Statistics 2009 (PDF - 24KB)

RIA AC12 Annual Statistics 2008 (PDF - 21KB)

RIA AC12 Annual Statistics 2007 (PDF - 16KB)