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Sinn Féin proposes alternative to Government’s sick pay scheme and illness benefit cut

23 October, 2012 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD


Speaking in advance of the PMB on statutory sick pay this evening Sinn Fein’s spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD said the government’s proposal to cut illness benefit by way of introducing a statutory sick pay scheme will cost jobs.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said the government should instead raise more PRSI from those employers that can afford to pay it.

Speaking this afternoon Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:

“By passing an €89 million burden onto employers with no regard to their ability to pay some employers will be forced to close jobs, sick workers will see their pay-packets reduced and discrimination against those with disabilities or recurring illnesses will rise.

“The Fianna Fáil motion to be debated this evening rightly condemns the government proposal but they offer no alternative whatsoever. To be credible in opposition you can’t just say no, you must put forward alternatives.

“I am putting forward an alternative plan which would raise €91.5 million or €2.5 million more than the figure targeted by government. I am tabling an amendment to tonight’s motion proposing that the government instead increase the employers’ PRSI contributions paid by those employers that can afford to pay more without precipitating job losses or pay cuts for those on low and middle incomes.

“The government could do this by raising the employer PRSI contribution made on pay exceeding €100,000 to 15.75% which would raise €91.5 million without cutting the Illness Benefit Scheme or costing jobs.”


Sinn Féin’s amendment to this evening’s private members’ motion:

To delete the below paragraph:
- That an additional taxation burden on employers will drive many SME’s out of business, damaging the economy and generating more unemployment.
and substitute the following:
- That an additional taxation burden on employers imposed without regard to ability to pay will drive many SME’s out of business, damaging the economy and generating more unemployment.

And after “scheme” where it finally occurs insert the following:
“, and
• instead increase the employers PRSI contributions paid by those employers that can afford to pay more without precipitating job losses or pay cuts for those on low and middle incomes by raising the employer PRSI contribution made on pay exceeding €100,000 to 15.75% which would raise €91.5 million without cutting the Illness Benefit Scheme.

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