The Unfair Dismissals Acts 1977 to 2015 provide protection for employees from being unfairly dismissed from their jobs by laying down criteria on which the fairness or otherwise of dismissals can be judged. The Acts provide that every dismissal of an employee will be presumed to have been unfair unless the employer can show substantial grounds justifying the dismissal. There are currently no provisions contained in the Unfair Dismissals Acts 1977 to 2015 to provide that a person cannot be dismissed from their job on the grounds that they are claiming the carer's allowance.
The Social Welfare Consolidation Act 2005 provides that a carer can work or study outside the home to a limited extent while still receiving the allowance. From 6th January 2020, the number of hours allowed will increase from 15 hours to 18.5 hours.
Where an individual believes they are being deprived of employment rights, they may refer a complaint to the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) where the matter can be dealt with by way of mediation or adjudication, leading to a decision that is enforceable through the District Court.
Complaints can be made on an online complaint form available at the WRC’s website www.workplacerelations.ie. The WRC’s Customer Service Section, which provides information to both employers and employees in relation to employment, equality and industrial relations rights and obligations, can be contacted at Lo-call: 1890 80 80 90 or 059-9178990.
I trust this clarifies matters for the Deputy.