As soon as Bulgaria and Romania were admitted to the European Union, existing members flew into a bit of a panic. Can't have all those Eastern Europeans moving about at will, settling where they like...or settling where the welfare benefits are the most generous.
In Ireland, emigrants from the newest EU member states cannot come stay unless they have a job, which requires a work permit. Ignore the law, and you get deported. Sounds very simple and straightforward, but those who wrote the law never took Pavee Point into account.
Life in Romania sucks, to put it mildly. So why would a Gypsy family want to stay there when they can come to Ireland and take advantage of all that is offered to the unemployed? Hence, a large contingent of Roma (as they prefer to be called) took up residence on the M50 roundabout in Ballymun, and sat back while they pleaded their hard-luck case.
Time's up on the gypsy camp, and so the Garda National Immigration Bureau paid them a visit this morning. Time to go, the government officials said, back from whence you came as you have no visible means of support and you've made an absolute mess of the roundabout with your shacks and tents and cardboard shelters. Go, leave, be gone.
Not so fast, said the kind hearts of Pavee Point. Those are travelling folks, like our own Travellers, and how cruel you are to make them leave. They are here in Ireland because Romania is an absolute hell hole. It is imperative that the Irish government provide free accommodations for the Rostas family of fifty, as it won't do to allow them to live on the side of the M50. But the ultimate solution? Ireland should put pressure on Romania to improve living conditions in Romania. What a brilliant idea. Why ever has no one thought about it before?
Justice Minister Brian Lenihan is thinking about issuing a removal order, to deport the Rostas clan on the grounds that they are in Ireland illegally. They have another fifteen days to come up with a good reason to be allowed to stay, and Pavee Point will undoubtedly be firmly on their side.
The Travellers in Ireland are largely reviled and discriminated against, and Pavee Point is not helping their cause at all with this particular crusade.