Thursday, 18 November 2021
Department of Public Expenditure and Reform
Flexible Work Practices
173. To ask the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform when he will be legislating for blended and flexible working arrangements for public service workers in possible circumstances; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [56627/21]
You will be aware that the Government has committed in the Programme for Government to mandating public sector employers to move to 20% home and remote working.
In July, 2021, the Government approved a Policy Statement on Blended Working in the Civil Service, which was developed by the Civil Service Management Board. The Policy Statement commits the Civil Service to implementing a policy of blended working for the future that can provide flexibility to both employees and their employers in a manner that supports the continued delivery of high quality services to Government, the public and business while providing employees, where appropriate, with choice and opportunity.
Remote working in the Civil Service, post pandemic, will be facilitated on a blended basis. In this context, Officials in my Department have also been working with, and continue to work with employers across the Civil and Public Service to develop a Blended Working Policy Framework for the Civil Service with the aim of achieving the 20% target.
This Framework focuses on the longer-term approach to blended working in the sector and will assist in providing a consistent approach across the wider public sector. It is intended that the Framework will be finalised over the coming weeks, following engagement with employee representatives. When this engagement has concluded and the Framework is agreed with the Civil Service Management Board, it will be rolled out to all civil service organisations. The Framework will inform the development of organisational blended working policies, which will be tailored to meet the specific requirements of each Department/Office.
The Tánaiste and Minster for Enterprise, Trade and Employment will be bringing forward legislation to provide employees with the right to request remote working which will apply to both public and private sectors.