Sinn Féin spokesperson on Workers’ Rights Louise O’Reilly TD has said the devil will be in the detail regarding government plans for a redundancy scheme to cater for workers and businesses as we exit Covid-19.
Teachta O’Reilly said:
“The issue of access to redundancy and a fair calculation of reckonable service for workers in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) is an issue I have been raising for nearly a year now.
“Earlier this year, I introduced the Redundancy Payments (Lay-off, Short Time and Calculation of Reckonable Service) Bill to ensure that time spent by workers on lay off and short time, such as in receipt of the PUP, is calculated as reckonable service in relation to the calculation of their redundancy entitlements.
“It is to be welcomed that the government and Tánaiste have now prioritised this matter and intend to make a special payment of up to a maximum of €1,860 to workers who have lost out on reckonable service during the pandemic.
“It will be interesting to see the full detail of this plan because it currently seems that it will exclude workers who were laid off during the pandemic but subsequently entered into alternative employment.
“Any plan that excludes these workers is fundamentally unfair because there are no such qualification criteria for accessing redundancy under normal circumstances.
“Furthermore, the details of the plan announced so far does not explicitly make time spent on the PUP reckonable service, so for workers who return to employment but may need to access a redundancy payment in the future, this will mean a period of broken service, which will impact future redundancy calculations.
“On the whole, any action from government in this area is welcome. But until we see the full detail of the scheme, it is unclear if it will be fair and effective.”