Written Answers. - Border Duty Allowances.

Mary Coughlan

Question:

215 Miss Coughlan asked the Minister for Defence if his attention has been drawn to the discontent within the Army regarding the lack of overtime and subsistence allowances during Border duty; if he will rectify this inequity as a matter of urgency; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [9256/96]

Overtime is not payable to members of the permanent Defence Force, consequently the question of its payment does not arise. There is, however, a consolidated allowance known as Border duty allowance which is payable on a permanent basis to all personnel posted to Border units. This allowance ranges from £42.52 to £48.12 per week and is paid in recognition of, inter alia, the incidence of separation from families and difficult working conditions.

Subsistence allowance is paid in respect of those occasions where personnel are performing duties away from their stations and are not provided with meals. This does not arise frequently, however, as there is a comprehensive catering system in place in Border units, in which there has been heavy investment, to cope with feeding troops in the field.