Dáil Questions – Social Protection – Low-paid jobs

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Dáil Work, Oral Questions, Social Welfare

Questions put to Minister Joan Burton in relation to the number of low paid jobs, shows the boasting of this government about “getting everyone back to work” is in actual fact a crusade  to provide employers with low-wage jobs, with precarious condition for workers and the taxpayer picking up the tab through having to subvent  inadequate  hours and wages with Social Protection payments like Family Income Supplement. Her Department should more aptly be named the Department of Corporate Welfare rather than Social Protection.

Question No: 20 Ref No: 1163-16

To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection if she has had any discussions with the Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation regarding the prevalence of low wage, zero-hour and casual contracts and their impact on the Social Protection budget.; and if she will make a statement on the matter. – Clare Daly.

For ORAL answer on Wednesday, 13th January, 2016.

REPLY

In November my colleague the Minister for Business and Employment Ged Nash TD published a the report, “A Study on the Prevalence of Zero Hours Contracts among Irish Employers and their Impact on Employees” by the University of Limerick.

The independent study commissioned by Minister Nash and carried out by Dr Michelle O’Sullivan follows a commitment to undertake such an examination in the Government’s Statement of Priorities in July 2014.

Officials from my Department met with Dr O’Sullivan and her team and contributed to her research. As part of this process the Department outlined its experience of providing in-work support to its clients via the broad range of working age supports including the family income supplement, the back to work family dividend and jobseeker payments.

The Department of Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation are in the process of undertaking a short consultation process with employers, trade unions and other stakeholders including my Department on the findings and recommendations of this report. As part of this process I have written to Minister Nash and have expressed my views in relation to the report’s recommendations.

I welcomed the publication of the report and I believed that the study provides timely and valuable contribution in setting out the future policy direction in this area. I understand that Minister Nash will be considering the submissions his Department has received and his recommendations will be brought to Cabinet in the coming weeks on how we should tackle this type of precarious work, while at the same time recognising the need for some levels of flexibility for employers and employees.
ORAL question for answer on 13/01/2016 :
To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection the number of persons in receipt of Family Income Supplement for each of the years 2011 to 2015; and if she will make a statement on the matter. – Clare Daly.

Question No: 30 Ref No: 1162-16

To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection the number of persons in receipt of Family Income Supplement for each of the years 2011 to 2015; and if she will make a statement on the matter. – Clare Daly.

For ORAL answer on Wednesday, 13th January, 2016.

REPLY

The family income supplement (FIS) provides support for employees, with families, who have low earnings in relation to their family size.

The number of families in receipt of FIS from 2011 to 2015 is given in the table below;

Table — FIS Numbers

FIS figures 2011 and 2014