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Community Employment Schemes Operation

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 17 April 2018

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

Questions (1404)

Paul Murphy


1404. Deputy Paul Murphy asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the measures taken by her Department to ensure that the attention of those on community employment schemes is drawn to their holiday pay entitlement; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [15167/18]

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Written answers (Question to Employment)

When Community Employment (CE) applicants are appointed, the Sponsor, as the employer, is fully responsible for all aspects concerning the management and welfare of participants. An employment contract and description of work tasks must be drawn up between the Sponsor and each participant.

A CE participant engaged for the full duration of a 52-week project is entitled to 81 hours holidays per project year (or on a pro-rata basis 8% of time worked). Where a lesser period is worked, holidays should be calculated on a pro rata basis. CE participants are entitled, without loss of pay, to all public holidays that fall on days they would normally work. Holidays must be taken within the 52-week project period. Holiday pay/time off is earned against time worked and CE participants have an entitlement to pay in lieu of any untaken holidays at the end of their CE placement under Section 23 of the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997, similar to other workers.

A CE Supervisor qualifies for the statutory holiday entitlement, which is 8% of the hours an employee works in a leave year (but subject to a maximum of 4 working weeks) plus public holidays. Holidays must be taken within the 52-week period of the project.

A formal process of recording annual leave is required for the Supervisor(s) and participants. A leave sheet for each Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection (DEASP) funded employee (Supervisors, Assistant Supervisors and participants) signed by the Sponsor should be made available to the DEASP Officer.

Since 1 August 2015, an employee can accumulate statutory annual leave entitlement during a period of certified sick leave. Employees on long-term sick leave can retain annual leave they could not take due to illness for up to 15 months after the end of the year in which it is accrued.

It is a matter for the Sponsor/Supervisor to ensure that all holiday entitlements are taken as leave before the end of the participant’s contract. Holiday arrangements are a matter of agreement between the Sponsor and the participant.

I trust this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.