The plight of accession country immigrants who arrive in Ireland in the hope of a better future but face unexpected hardship.

A new report on the plight of immigrants that come to Ireland looking for work paints a shocking picture of thousands of people unable to find work, left homeless and dependent on handouts to survive. Some homeless agencies have described the situation as a crisis.

Róisín Ní Eadhra investigates the plight of Polish immigrants and meets Marek Durda, who is living rough in an abandoned, derelict house in Dublin. According to the report, this situation is not uncommon amongst immigrants from EU accession states. At least 76,000 have arrived in Ireland in the past year in search of work. As they are EU citizens they are entitled to work in the Republic of Ireland. However, those without work are denied social welfare for up to two years under the Habitual Residency Rule, leading to homelessness and hardship.

Encouraged to come to Ireland by domestic media reports of prosperity in Ireland, up to 50,000 Polish people are believed to have arrived in Ireland in the last 12 months, escaping their homeland where unemployment is almost 18%.

The main recruitment agency dealing with Polish immigrants in Ireland say they now see about 50 new Polish people each day with about 70% unable to speak good, basic English. Stella Pedziwatr of Grafton Recruitment warns that Polish people need to have a good level of spoken English to get a job in Ireland, even in unskilled positions.

The Capuchin Day Centre, which supplies meals for the homeless, has seen the number availing of their service rise in recent months. Most of the newcomers are Polish. Brother Kevin Crowley of the Capuchin Day Centre sees a huge crisis looming and identifies the increase in predominantly Polish men attending the centre. Crowley argues that immigrants need to be made aware of the job situation in Ireland prior to arriving in the country. Fr. Mick Cullen of Crosscare compares the situation in Ireland for Polish immigrants with that of the situation in England in the 1950's for Irish immigrants.

These immigrants arrive in Ireland in search of a better future but upon arrival face unexpected hardship.