Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - Equal Pay Directive.

17.

asked the Minister for Labour the extent to which the EEC Directive on equal pay (75/117/EEC) of 10 February 1975, which provides for equal pay for men and women for work to which equal value is attributed, has been implemented in Ireland; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

The Equal Pay Directive was implemented by the Anti-Discrimination (Pay) Act, 1974, which came into operation on 31 December 1975. That Act lays down detailed procedures to ensure compliance and for investigation of complaints.

I am satisfied that the provisions of the directive in question are generally being implemented. The European Commission, which has specific responsibility for ensuring that the directive is implemented in all member states, has introduced legal proceedings in relation to the directive against a number of countries, but not including Ireland.

Would the Minister agree that in a number of industries and employments the proportion of women employees is being reduced and that the equal pay provisions are reacting against women?

I am not so aware and I would be very concerned if that was the effect of the equal pay directive.