Congress statement on zero hours legislation Dec 2018

19 Dec 2018


Congress notes that the Employment (Miscellaneous Provisions) Bill 2017 has completed its passage through the Oireachtas today January 19 2018.
Congress General Secretary Patricia King said worker’s rights have been enhanced thanks to efforts by ICTU to protect low-paid vulnerable workers and in particular zero hours contracts have been prohibited “in most circumstances”.
Congress welcomes the adoption of this important legislation by the Oireachtas as it has been campaigning for a number of years for legislation to provide greater certainty for workers on their conditions on employment and in particular their hours of work.

By passing this law the Oireachtas have decided that:

  • Employers must furnish all workers with a written statement of their main employment conditions, including their daily and weekly hours of work, within five days of commencing employment
  • The Bill prohibits zero hours contracts in most circumstances; it provides that zero hours work practises are permissible in limited circumstances, e.g. emergencies or short-term relief work to cover routine absences
  • Workers are entitled by law, in most circumstances, to be placed on a band of hours that more accurately reflect the hours actually worked
  • Requires employers to pay minimum payment of 3 hours pay (minimum wage of JLC hourly rate) where a worker is called into work but where the employer makes no work available.

Congress General Secretary Patricia King said that the passage of this legislation provides important new rights for low-paid vulnerable workers.
She said “over the last three years Congress has been campaigning and working with officials from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection for fairer conditions at work and the enactment of this legalisation marks an important milestone in that ongoing campaign”.
Congress wishes to acknowledge the assistance of Oireachtas members who ensured the passage of this legislation.Congress will now be working to ensure that the legislation is commenced as soon as possible.