April 8, 2024
Government supports for business cannot be at the expense of workers’ rights – Louise O’Reilly TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Enterprise, Trade, and Employment, Louise O’Reilly TD, has said that government supports for business are an absolute necessity, but that they cannot come at the expense of workers’ rights.

The Fingal TD said that businesses and workers must be supported in tandem.

Teachta O’Reilly said:

“It has been clear for some time that supports for business must be forthcoming. This need was reinforced by the Department of Enterprise’s paper on the impact of government policy interventions on business costs.

“The report included analysis of the impact of statutory changes such as the right to request remote work, Statutory Sick Pay, pension auto-enrolment, Parent’s Leave and Parent’s Benefit, the additional public holiday, and the transition to a Living Wage.

“These are all measures which Sinn Féin supports and campaigned for over many years, and we welcomed the government’s adoption and implementation of Sinn Féin policy.

“However, there is no doubt that for some firms the impact of these changes is significant in terms of additional costs. The pressure on business is particularly acute in the domestic demand driven services economy – namely grocery, retail and hospitality.

“Given the importance of these sectors to the economy, to employment, and to society, Sinn Féin has called for government to engage with industry to design a bespoke, but time limited, support for those sectors most impacted by public policy interventions.

“However, support for business cannot be, as is being reported in the media today, at the expense of workers’ rights. Sinn Féin believes there is no reason why business and workers cannot be supported in tandem.

“Pitting business against workers is a time-honoured Fine Gael tradition, and it is unsurprising that it is again raising its head as Simon Harris takes control of the party. He is, after all, the Minister who forced nurses and midwives onto the streets to strike for improved pay and conditions.

“If the Fine Gael anointed Taoiseach wants to begin his tenure by throwing workers under the bus, he will meet swift opposition from Sinn Féin, workers, and the trade union movement.”

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