The Social Democrats have strongly condemned the three Government parties of Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Green Party for voting down their motion on Workers’ Rights today.
The party’s first Private Members’ Time motion of the 33rd Dáil was debated last night. It sought to increase protection for workers across a range of areas, including low-pay, precarious work, collective bargaining and the valuing of essential workers the country has relied on during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Gary Gannon TD said:
“This was a missed opportunity by the Government to lay down a marker for how it intends to treat workers in Ireland during its term in office. The Government amendment to our motion only paid lip service to workers’ rights and made no reference to specific issues such as collective bargaining or the right to representation.
“During the Covid-19 crisis, it has been our lower paid and more precariously positioned workers who have provided a most valuable contribution to our State. The Government amendment to our motion was a slap in the face for these workers and is proof positive that employment rights and decent living standards will not be high on their list of priorities in the years ahead.”
Catherine Murphy TD, co-leader of the Social Democrats, said:
“We find it difficult to understand why Fine Gael committed to supporting workers’ rights in Northern Ireland as part of the ‘New Decade, New Approach’ agreement back in January. Yet, when given the opportunity to do exactly the same in the Republic of Ireland by supporting our motion, they voted it down.
“The Social Democrats will not be found wanting when it comes to championing the rights of all workers in this country, particularly those on low-incomes or with no job security. We will seek to ensure that workers’ rights and conditions are enshrined in law and have full statutory backing.”
July 16, 2020