SIPTU Joins Calls For 'Immediate End' Of Free Labour Schemes

So-called 'free labour schemes' must be scrapped, SIPTU has said.

The union joined calls for schemes such as JobBridge to come to an "immediate end" following media reports that auditors in the Department of Social Protection found its monitoring system is unable to ensure its operation is not resulting in job displacement.

Making the call, SIPTU General President, Jack O'Connor, said: "The results of this report concerning the operation of the JobBridge Scheme should end the debate about continuing such 'free labour schemes'. They must all be wound up immediately.

"No one should be surprised about the results of this report which confirm mounting anecdotal evidence concerning these schemes and a possible link to job displacement as well as other abuses. There may have been an argument for such schemes when unemployment was running at double digits but thankfully that is no longer the case."

Mr O'Connor said that it was a "sad truth" that there was an unscrupulous element among employers that will exploit any opportunity to "turn a quick buck".

"They will strive to do this irrespective of whatever safeguards or monitoring is put in place concerning these schemes. They have no scruples about exploiting workers, conning the taxpayer or competing unfairly with other businesses," the union president added.

"The only way to combat such abuse is to wind up all these schemes as it can no longer be argued that they are in any way required. In the case of the public sector, where the Government has direct control, all those currently employed on such schemes should be offered direct employment given the country's much improved economic circumstances."


Related Irish News Stories
Click here for the latest headlines.

11 February 2014
DAA SIPTU Members Vote For Strike Action
SIPTU members of the Dublin Airport Authority have voted in favour if industrial action in a dispute over their pension scheme. The long-running dispute surrounds a deficit of around €780m in the Irish Aviation Superannuation Scheme, which covers workers in the DAA and Aer Lingus.
01 August 2012
Former Nursing Home Boss Should Return To 'Face The Music'
The former owner of a Kilkenny nursing home – who has been under investigation in relation to the care of residents and who owes thousands of euros to union members – should return from Australia to "face the music", SIPTU Organiser, Louise O’Reilly has said.
09 December 2011
Siptu Announce Protest Rally at Dáil
One of Ireland's largest unions is organising a protest rally at Daíl Eireann on Friday to protest against proposed Budget cuts to Community Employment Schemes.
21 June 2016
Work-To-Rule Action Suspended At NAS Control Centre
SIPTU members in the National Ambulance Service control centre have suspended their work-to-rule industrial action to allow for new discussions with senior HSE management.
28 May 2012
More Than Three Quarters Of Primary Schools Operate Book Rental Schemes
New research by the Department of Education and Skills shows that 76% of primary schools operate a school book rental scheme. The Minister for Education and Skills, Ruairí Quinn T.D., asked the Department to undertake an investigation of book rental schemes in order to examine ways to reduce the financial burden of school books on families.