Tuesday, 27 January 2004

Questions (228)

Bernard J. Durkan

Question:

344 Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Finance the bank holiday entitlements of civil servants who have suffered an illness or who were off work due to an accident in the previous tax year; if his attention has been drawn to the changes in this area; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1969/04]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Finance)

The public holiday entitlement of all employees, including civil servants, is stated in section 21 of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997.

Section 21(1) states that:

Subject to the provisions of this section, an employee shall, in respect of a public holiday, be entitled to whichever one of the following his or her employer determines, namely

(a) a paid day off on that day,

(b) a paid day off within a month of thatday,

(c) an additional day of annual leave,

(d) an additional day's pay.

Employees (including civil servants) absent from work immediately before the public holiday will not be entitled to benefit from the public holiday in the following circumstances:

(i) an absence in excess of 52 weeks by reason of an occupational injury,

(ii) an absence in excess of 26 weeks by reason of illness or injury,

(iii) an absence in excess of 13 weeks by reason not already mentioned in (i) and (ii) but being an absence authorised by the employer, including lay-off,

(iv) an absence by reason of a strike.

These public holiday provisions of the Organisation of Working Time Act were communicated to all Civil Service Departments and offices by means of a letter from my Department, addressed to all personnel officers on 18 April 2001, entitled Sick Leave — entitlement in respect of public holidays.