Thursday, 17 April 2014

Questions (15)

Mick Wallace


15. Deputy Mick Wallace asked the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht in view of the fact that the national cultural institutions are required to be in compliance with public sector pay and recruitment policy, as set down by the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform, if it is acceptable for these institutions to advertise full-time unpaid internships; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16818/14]

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Written answers (Question to Arts)

I refer the Deputy to my reply to his Question No. 30 of 6 March 2014 which related to the same topic. As I outlined on that occasion, whilst my Department provides funding to the National Cultural Institutions, the board of each institution is responsible for all operational matters, including recruitment and internship programmes.

I have no direct function in these matters but am given to understand that a number of the National Cultural Institutions offer internship opportunities, which are provided mainly to third-level students and/or new graduates who wish to gain practical experience and develop work place skills relevant to their area of study.

I am advised that such programmes operate in a mutually supportive and complementary manner, which assists the institutions in achieving their goals and objectives whilst ensuring a rewarding and beneficial experience for interns in terms of enhancing their career opportunities.