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Results 1-20 of 839,346 for "section:" . (isset($hansardmajors[$1]["title"]) ? $hansardmajors[$z[1]]["title"] : "$z[1]") OR "section:" . (isset($hansardmajors[$1]["title"]) ? $hansardmajors[$z[1]]["title"] : "$z[1]") speaker:Matt Shanahan

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Impact of Covid-19: Education – Return to School and School Transport (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: Thank you for your confident stewardship of the committee this morning, Chair. I also thank the officials from the Department of Education and Skills for their attendance this morning. I wish to ask Mr. Ó Foghlú about the national tendering he mentioned. I am somebody who is quite close to SMEs in the country and I am disappointed that this is going to go to a national tender...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Impact of Covid-19: Education – Return to School and School Transport (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: I hope there will be quite a bit of oversight on this because from the look of them, the tenders will be large and it would be a shame if Irish SMEs do not get a full opportunity to tender. I wish to raise an issue in which I have a family interest. It was stated that 12 schools are getting special supports in terms of accommodation. I wish to raise the Ballygunner Gaelcholáiste,...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Impact of Covid-19: Education – Return to School and School Transport (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: I appreciate that. I thank Mr. Loftus. I will return to Mr. Ó Foghlú to ask him about teaching absences and substitute teachers. I asked a question the other day about the number of teachers, like healthcare workers, who might potentially list themselves as either vulnerable or at risk. I asked it to understand what the absence of teachers might be on the return in September....

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Impact of Covid-19: Education – Return to School and School Transport (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: School transport has come up a number of times this morning. I noted Deputy Cahill's remarks yesterday in the Dáil about school bus provision in Tipperary. We have a similar situation in Waterford. We have a number of large bus carriers that are supplying public service obligation, PSO, contracts. I have huge concerns about the availability of buses. Mr. Ó Foghlú says that...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Impact of Covid-19: Education – Return to School and School Transport (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: The earnestness of Mr. Ó Foghlú and his colleagues today and their commitment has shone through. That is not to take from any previous civil servants here but it is plain to see that the Department is focused on trying to get as much of a solution provided as possible. With respect to the previous conversation regarding the use of technology, the following is probably something...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Impact of Covid-19: Education – Return to School and School Transport (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: As the Department manages the return to schools and tries to chart infection control, I wonder if it could liaise with the Department of Health to examine whether it might be possible to have expedited testing for teachers or children who have Covid-19 symptoms. It will be important to do that as quickly as possible in a school setting and rapidly identify the close contacts. I am not sure...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: I thank our contributors today. I am keen to highlight that considerable work has been done by Deputy Naughten in this area. He was the first to break the story in terms of the sharing of data. It was evident that the contact tracing had broken down, which was the reason for sharing the information. Do the contributors have a view on when data privilege trumps personal or public health risks?

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: Ms McGinley's own statement reflects the comments of Dr. Mai Mannix, who highlighted the language differences and the time it was taking to contact people. This needs to be borne in mind in future. In light of what happened in Germany, we are all afraid of a second wave. There are lessons to be learned. I commend Ms McGinley on the points she made regarding the HSA inspections. This...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: The Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation?

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: Has the MRCI asked the Department about the legal basis for its resistance? I know someone could begin a contract for work and then move on but in other countries one is allowed move after a period of time. Why are these people embedded with an individual employer for such a length of time?

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: Has the MRCI lobbied in that regard?

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: I suggest to the Chairman that this may be something on which the committee could report. The written submission stated that 82.5% of workers do not live in employer-provided accommodation. In April, some employees of our local meat factories were travelling 150 miles up the country to meet others at the weekend. That must be addressed. It is not only the factories that have obligations;...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: I accept that. The other area that appears to be unregulated is agency employment. The representatives have spoken about employees working for between €10 and €11.50 an hour. When I worked in the meat industry, awarding bonuses was standard as a means to increase productivity levels. It is unbelievable that people are working for these wages. I assume the agency is getting...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: That begs a question about how they are only earning the minimum wage. I have worked in the meat business and productivity and bonus schemes are how one increases production.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: Okay.

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: I welcome the contributors. Apropos of the previous conversations, I have sympathy for the people involved on all sides, including the farmers who are trying to get a price for their product and the processors who are competing internationally. I worked in the meat processing industry for five years so I have a good idea of some the challenges, not least those relating to employees. I...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: I thank Mr. Healy. We have heard that approximately 20% of the national workforce comes from outside the EU. I do not know whether EU workers are subject to agency contracts, although some might find their way to meat processors via agencies. This matter was raised during our earlier debate. It appears that those on agency contracts are on particularly low wages. In my experience of the...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: Mr. Healy spoke about permits and stated that plants had no input into them because they were basically set up by the Department. Would the industry support a change in a permit's status that would allow a worker to move more quickly, for example, after three months or some other duration under a year? This would allow the industry to target for recruitment workers with permits in other...

Special Committee on Covid-19 Response: Congregated Settings: Meat Plants (Resumed) (10 Jul 2020)

Matt Shanahan: Obviously, we have had a wide-ranging discussion. In terms of what the meat industry wanted to come in and speak about and what it has been asked about, we have digressed. In terms of the employment, the three main areas that have come up are the issues of the agencies, the permits and the sick pay. The sick pay issue is an employee welfare issue and I hope it will be possible for MII to...

Teachtaireacht ó Choiste - Message from Committee (9 Jul 2020)

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