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14 Aug 2022

Louth TD slams delays and confusion over €1,000 Covid Recognition Payment

HSE Covid Testing Centre in Ardee to receive Covid Recognition Payment on or before 4 August

Louth TD slams delays and confusion over €1,000 Covid Recognition Payment

Louth TD slams delays and confusion over €1,000 Covid Recognition Payment

Louth TD Ged Nash has slammed what he describes as “unacceptable delays and confusion” over the €1,000 Covid Recognition Payment for health staff.

While the HSE has confirmed to Deputy Nash that eligible swabbers at the HSE Covid Testing Centre in Ardee will receive their €1,000 Covid Recognition Payment on or before 4 August, the Labour TD hit out at the Minister for Health over what he described as the unacceptable delays and inconsistencies in approach to the payment of the bonus to eligible staff across a host of eligible grades, groups and categories.

In a statement to the Dundalk Democrat, Deputy Nash said: “I have spoken to countless hospital staff, contract cleaners and Section 39 workers who have yet to receive the payment to which they are entitled. The fact that the Department of Health has not paid the pandemic recognition payment to a single Section 39 worker, contract cleaner, caterer, member of security staff and workers in private nursing homes is beyond insulting.”

“The HSE has made it clear to unions from day one that the circular that gives effect to the decision to pay non-HSE staff lies squarely with the Department of Health and the Minister. The longer they shirk their responsibilities, the longer these workers will be left high and dry during the worst cost of living crisis in our lifetime. These workers made enormous personal sacrifices. They risked their health to keep us safe. They truly went above and beyond the call of duty and this needs to be recognised.”

Deputy Nash continued, “it is beyond time for the Department of Health who are responsible for paying the tens of thousands of Section 39 workers, cleaners, caterers, security staff and workers in private nursing homes, take responsibility and settle this long standing commitment to recognise their contribution.

“Fewer than 100,000 of the 154,000 existing workforce have been paid so far. After four months of stalling there is a very long way to go make this right.”

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