Written answers

Wednesday, 19 May 2021

Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection

Gender Proofing of Policies

Photo of Dara CallearyDara Calleary (Mayo, Fianna Fail)
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159. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the steps she is taking to ensure that the forthcoming report and conclusions of the Pensions Commission will be appropriately gender proofed; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [26827/21]

Photo of Heather HumphreysHeather Humphreys (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
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The Pensions Commission was established to examine sustainability and eligibility issues with the State Pension system and the Social Insurance Fund, in fulfilment of our Programme for Government commitment.

I was keen to ensure that the Commission had strong female representation in its membership, and I am pleased that the majority of members – 7 out of 11 – including its chairperson, are women.

I am satisfied that the Commission, with its gender-balanced membership and extensive experience of social and public policy, is well equipped to grasp the potential impacts of any pensions reform options on affected groups, such as women, low-income workers, and young people.

As part of its Terms of Reference the Commission has been asked to consider how the State Pension system can further accommodate long-term carers. In this regard, as available on the Pensions Commission's website, pensionscommission.gov.ie, the National Women's Council of Ireland and Family Carers Ireland made presentations to the Commission. The National Women's Council of Ireland was also a panellist at the Commission’s virtual Stakeholder Forum.

In accordance with its Terms of Reference, the Commission is due to submit a report on its work to me by 30 June 2021. The Government intends to take action having regard to the recommendations of the Commission within 6 months of receipt of the report. My Department has committed in the National Strategy for Women and Girls to gender-proof pensions policy reforms.

I hope this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.


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