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Rigorous review of all state and semi-state contracts called for to ensure proper pay and conditions for all employees

27 March, 2006

Sinn Féin spokesperson on Employment affairs, Arthur Morgan TD, has called for a "rigorous review" of all existing contracts between state companies, semi-state companies and local authorities and outside contractors conducting work on their behalf to ensure full compliance with all employment regulations with specific attention being paid to remuneration. 

Deputy Morgan made his call after yet another scandal, involving low paid migrants workers working for the ESB, was exposed by the Technical Engineering and Electrical Union.  The TEEU has produced evidence showing that some workers employed by the Serbian company contracted by the ESB were earning as little as €4.96c an hour.  The company has refused to pay arrears to these workers, some of who it is estimated are owed €40,000.

Deputy Morgan said, "With employment scandals emerging on an almost weekly basis it is clear that current employment protections and regulations are not working.  It is absolutely outrageous that some of the biggest scandals are emerging not in the private sector but in relation to state and semi-state contracts.  It is now imperative that all state and semi-state companies as well as local authorities immediately conduct a rigorous review of all existing contracts they hold with outside contractors to ensure that those contractors are fully complaint with all employment regulations including the right of workers to proper and recognised remuneration. Sinn Féin is also calling for specific targeting of inspections by the Labour Inspectorate at those contractors benefiting from public procurement and the introduction of a prohibition of companies with a record of breaking employment law from eligibility to bid for public contracts or to sub contract on public projects." ENDS

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