Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Public Expenditure and Reform Seán Fleming TD has called on the Minister for Public Expenditure Brendan Howlin to publish the Government’s plan to protect frontline services and fill the staffing gaps to arise from the early retirement scheme.
Deputy Fleming said: “According the latest figures around 8,000 public service employees are expected to leave the public service with health and education employees making up most of those retiring. There are extremely serious concerns about the maintenance of frontline services and Minister Howlin must publish the Government’s plan to deal with this.
“It is simply not good enough for the Government to say ‘we have a plan’. Minister Howlin should publish the contingency plan in the Dáil next week. The public need to know what plans are being put in place to maintain critical services.
“Around 3,500 staff leaving are in the health sector. These are acute-care nurses, midwives and home care specialists to name just a few areas that will be significantly affected. Almost 300 gardaí and over 200 Defence Forces personnel will leave under the early retirement scheme. This is an extremely serious issue that the Government has only a few weeks to address.
“It is up to the Government to manage this process and there has been no clear evidence of Ministers being out in front of this issue. That has to change and change quickly.”