RTE Television

The Undocumented

President Trump's campaign promise to crack down on illegal immigrants has created a climate of fear for the estimated 50,000 undocumented Irish people living in the United States of America. Many have lived there for decades. They have families, jobs, businesses and a lot to lose.

They make up a small fraction of the total undocumented population of 11 million. But these 50,000 Irish, like the others, are stranded by the failure of immigration reform, and threatened by the policies brought in by the new administration.

This documentary paints an intimate portrait of what it's like to be undocumented in Trump's America. With unprecedented access, six undocumented Irish living in New York City tell their stories about life and work in the Big Apple. Despite the risks, Irish people continue to travel to the US to live and work and pursue the American dream. Many live in the shadows today - unable to travel home or even get health insurance or a driver's licence.

President Trump made immigration a central pillar of his campaign and has been quick to step up enforcement of immigration law.

"I'm seeing stories that did occur in the early days of the undocumented Irish again, the raids, the knock on the door, waiting outside the workplace. I haven't seen those stories come through since the late 80. The fear is palpable and justfied" - Ray O'Hanlon, editor of the Irish Echo

The Undocumented