HSE disrespecting West Cork Home Helps says TD

Cork South West TD, Margaret Murphy O’Mahony has said that it is completely unfair and disrespectful that Home Help staff who are fully employed by the HSE are not included in the organisation’s official staffing numbers.“I find this highly disrespectful to the hundreds of Home Helps in Cork who do amazing work, day in day out, on behalf of the HSE. By not including them in the official staffing figures, the HSE are not giving these hard working employees the dignity and respect that they deserve.

Deputy Murphy O’Mahony was commenting after her party received confirmation from the Minister for Health that full time staff employed by the HSE, as home helps, are not categorised as employees in their employment statistics.

“This was further highlighted in the HSE National Service Plan 2018 which again reiterated that that home help staff are excluded from their Human Resource information statistics.

“This issue arises following on from a ruling made by the Labour Court in 1997 in which Home Help workers were given full employment status. At the time the HSE decided to exclude Home Help workers from general staffing numbers due to administrative procedures. However, it’s astonishing that this anomaly remains to be corrected 20 years on from the Labour Court ruling.

“The Home Help workers do get their payroll entitlements but they are not officially counted as full HSE employees. This simply isn’t good enough and it shows complete disregard and disrespect for the valuable work carried out by their Home Help workers.

“We constantly hear the refrain that we need to invest in, and be proud of, primary care services. Home Helps are the bedrock of primary care, yet the HSE won’t admit that they are employ thousands upon thousands of them to deliver their services.

“The Government needs to ensure that the HSE corrects this issue as soon as possible,” concluded Murphy O’Mahony.