Constituents with disabilities express concern over National Advocacy Service strike

08 July 2024

Ged Nash, Labour Spokesperson on Finance, Public Expenditure & Reform and Louth TD, said that constituents with disabilities have expressed serious concern about the looming strike by SIPTU members who work for the National Advocacy Service (NAS).

Deputy Nash said:

“Some vulnerable constituents have expressed serious concern over the impact that a strike by workers in NAS will have on their lives.

“The NAS provides free and expert representation for adults with disabilities across Ireland, this involves dealing with benefit claims, legal issues and other matters for people who have extreme difficulty in completing these tasks.

“I understand that the SIPTU members are taking industrial action as a last resort due to a failure of management in NAS to respect a Labour Court recommendation and provide them with adequate pay rises. It is a deeply unfortunate situation but if we are to maintain the high standard of services provided by NAS the correct level of skilled workers must be recruited and retained.

“It is unacceptable that the Government has failed to intervene in this matter and demand that an organisation which is fully funded by the state respect the Labour Court. The people who will suffer the most in what is a dispute not of their making are the disabled people, including my constituents, who rely on NAS staff to assist them in crucial tasks that they are unable to do themselves.

“Action is needed immediately to resolve this dispute and protect the vital assistance provided by NAS staff into the future. In particular, the Minister for Social Protection, Heather Humphreys, needs to intervene to bring the outstanding issues to a satisfactory conclusion.”

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