42. Deputy Mick Barry asked the Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality the number of work permits taken up as part of the atypical worker permission mechanism; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [37684/16]
Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality (Deputy Frances Fitzgerald): I am advised by the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) of my Department that the Atypical Working Scheme commenced in September 2013. The purpose of the scheme is to provide a streamlined mechanism to deal with atypical, short term employment or certain other employment situations which are not governed by the Employment Permits Acts or by current administrative procedures under the Employment Permits Acts.
Since the scheme commenced a total of 6,408 atypical working permissions have been granted, of which 2,000 were granted in 2015 and 2,912 to date in 2016.
In March 2016 the Atypical Working Scheme was expanded to include non-EEA Fishermen working in the Irish Fishing Fleet on boats greater than 15m. in length. A total of 178 atypical working permissions have been granted to date on foot of this. These permissions are included in the total of 6,408.