The Government has agreed to have a once-off public holiday on Friday 18th March 2022 in recognition of the efforts of the general public and Ireland’s frontline workers during the Covid-19 pandemic and in remembrance of people who lost their lives due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
From next year there will be a new permanent public holiday established in celebration of Imbolc/St. Brigid’s day. This will be the first Monday in every February, except where St. Brigid’s day, the 1st day of February, happens to fall on a Friday, in which case that Friday 1st February will be a public holiday. The Government want to ensure that the new public holiday provides for a long weekend for people. The first St. Brigid’s day public holiday will be Monday 6th February 2023.
The legislation which provides for public holidays is the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997. Section 21 of the Act provides that:
(1) 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 that day,
( c) an additional day of annual leave,
( d) an additional day’s pay:
The rate at which an employee is paid in respect of a public holiday will remain as is determined by S.I. 475/1997 Organisation of Working Time (Determination of pay for holiday regulations).