Wednesday, 19 December 2018
Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2017: From the Seanad
-----but while the advertisements were broadcast, they did not achieve the required results. The scope section of the Department did not get the numbers. We need to look behind this discussion to ensure the legislation that might be brought forward would be fit for purpose. People on bogus self-employment contracts face a major loss of entitlements. What worries me just as much as their loss of entitlements is their future loss of entitlements as we move down the road towards auto-enrolment for pensions. If they had an employer, there would be an employer contribution and so forth. As serious as this issue is now, with auto-enrolment, it will become twice as serious and the losses will effectively double.
The committee has embarked on a piece of work and we intend to move on with it early in the new year. We have had our opening sessions. I appeal to the Minister and the Department to work with us to ensure the legislation brought forward will get to the nub of the problem. We have all heard the anecdotal evidence, but when operations are worked through with Revenue and advertisements are run, the scope section of the Department does not have the numbers we think we should see. There is a problem and we must identify exactly where it is. Otherwise, we are not really addressing the underlying issue, about which I have some concerns. I appeal to the Minister to work with the committee in the first couple of months of the new year. If she intends to draft legislation, she should involve the committee throughout the process.