Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, Niall Collins has said that the Government’s commitment to ending zero hours contracts will be measured by how quickly it published and enacts legislation, and not by commitments made by Ministers.

Deputy Collins was commenting after Minister Mitchell O’Connor brought forward proposals to Government today aimed at strengthening workers’ rights in terms of zero hours contracts, and casual work.

“This is yet another example of Fianna Fáil securing Government approval for a policy proposal that it has campaigned on.  Our 2016 manifesto made a clear commitment to ban zero hour type contracts and to incorporate banded hour arrangements in legislation.

“As part of our agreement with Fine Gael, to provide confidence and supply to their minority government, we extracted a policy commitment from Fine Gael to ‘tackle the problems caused by the increased casualisation of work that prevents workers from being able to save or have any job security.’

“Of course this receiving agreement at Government level is to be welcomed, but what’s needed now is a swift drafting process, and legislative scrutiny by the Oireachtas Jobs Committee.

“The Confidence and Supply Agreement is now almost 12 months old. I am concerned that it has taken Minister Mitchell O’Connor this long to get Government approval on this important issue. We shouldn’t be waiting this long.

“It’s not as if the Bills Office is inundated with requests from Government departments with legislation.

“Once published, Fianna Fáil will closely analyse the heads of bill to ensure it works, and deals with issues, for both employee and employer alike.

“Too many workers are in very precarious positions because of a lack of protections in legislation. Fianna Fáil will ensure that the Oireachtas enacts sensible, progressive legislation that enhances workers’ rights and protects employment,” concluded Collins.