Government continually failing to deal with Ticket Touting – Quinlivan
Sinn Féin spokesperson on Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Maurice Quinlivan TD questioned the Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald on the ongoing problem of Ticket touting. At the weekend, we have again seen consumers being ripped off by ticket touts re-selling Ed Sheeran tickets.
Deputy Quinlivan said:
“I commended Ed Sheeran and his promoters who tried to prevent re-sale of tickets for his shows. However, the problem persists and it is clear that legislation is needed to tackle this problem. The ball is firmly in the Government’s court.
“I introduced a Bill in March which was aimed at curbing the abuse of the entertainment ticketing system in Ireland. That legislation would both take the profit away from Ticket Touts and also protect those who bought tickets in good faith but were subsequently unable to attend the event.”
Questioning the Tánaiste on promised legislation today, the Limerick City TD said:
“I commend Ed Sheeran and Aiken Promotions for taking proactive action to try and tackle ticket touting. However, it is a shame that music artists have had to take action themselves, as a result of Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael blocking a Bill that would have regulated this area. My Sale of Tickets (Sporting and Cultural Events) Bill 2017 aimed to take the profit out of ticket resales and protect consumers from unfair market practices.
“The Bill came before the Dáil in May and the government decided to kick it down the road for at least 9 months, helped along with support from Fianna Fáil.
“Although the decision by Ed Sheeran and Aiken Promotions in this case is very welcome and I commend them for taking such action, not every artist or sports team can or will do this, so the issue of ticket touting will persist until legislation is brought in at national level. The shambles over the weekend demonstrated that with tickets been offered for re sale almost immediately.
“This is a do-nothing government that does not want other parties bringing forward legislation. I have previously stated that I would welcome extensive engagement with all stakeholders at committee stage, where this Bill would be fully scrutinised and all issues can be discussed and addressed. Shelving the Bill will have no benefits for anyone, and it is consumers who are losing out.
“The Government’s inaction means my Bill will not be moved forward until February 2018 at the earliest and, as a result, consumers can expect to continue to get ripped off by ticket touts and unscrupulous secondary selling sites, thanks to Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael stalling this legislation.
“Last weekend, we saw consumers getting ripped off by ticket touts re-selling Ed Sheeran tickets and this will unfortunately continue as the Government refused to act on the problem. Yet, Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael decided to defer it at second stage for 9 months for no real reason.
“Clearly, the government has no plans to now deal with this continuing problem.”