ICTU welcomes extension of Covid payments to residents of direct provision centres.

9 Aug 2020

ICTU welcomes extension of Covid payments to residents of direct provision centres. 

The General Secretary of the Irish Congress of Trade Unions has this evening welcomed as “positive and sensible” the government’s confirmation that Covid 19 payments will be available to workers in direct provision centres and to other migrant workers.

Following a meeting with senior Government officials Patricia King General Secretary ICTU, noted the clarification by Minister Heather Humphreys, Minister for Social Protection, regarding access to Covid19 Enhanced Illness benefit by non-national workers and those in Direct Provision centres who either contract the disease or are required to self-isolate.

The Minister has also clarified that those groups of workers will have access to the special Pandemic Unemployment Payment in the event of temporary lay-off.

Ms King said: “This is a positive and sensible development. Congress has long been concerned at the plight of migrant workers. This is an important acknowledgment of the rights of those residing in direct provision centres to full access to payments.

Congress will continue to press for reform of the direct provision system and for better care of vulnerable families in the care of the State. 

We will work with our affiliate unions and appropriate NGOs to ensure that these workers are fully aware of their entitlements.

The restrictions announced tonight in the Midlands represent a setback. Workers concerned about their rights and entitlements should contact their trade union. As a movement we are mindful of the impact Covid 19 continues to have on workers, their families and communities and we encourage everyone to pay close attention to NPHET guidelines.

The health and welfare of workers must remain central to government policy at this time.”

Congress Communications Office:
Conor Kavanagh 0868116607