Dublin Fingal Senator Darragh O’Brien has described the Government’s deferral of gratuity payments for Home Help workers as “completely unacceptable” . “This issue has been going on for over four years and it is a slap in the face for the Minster to renege yet again on the Labour Court recommendation. “The Government has already missed three deadlines to resolve this matter and now it has been kicked back to next year – this is completely and utterly unacceptable. “Would the HSE and the Department allow this to happen if these were highly-paid hospital consultants? Is it that these are the lowest paid workers within our health service that they are not being given the priority?” asked Senator O’Brien when he raised the issue in the Seanad this week. “We are being strung along. This is a small number of people who have been earning €8, €9, €10 and €12 per hour, some of whom are due €5,000, €6,000, €7,000 or €8,000 back. It is a significant amount of money to them. “Why is the Minister continually allowing the Department to continually miss deadlines? “I think everyone will agree that home help workers carry out a crucial role on the front line of our health service in caring for our sick, elderly and inform at home. We cannot allow a situation to persist where a Labour Court recommendation from 2009 is continually being withheld.”
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