Joint Press Statement issued by Department of Justice and Equality; Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport; Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine; and the Workplace Relations Commission.

 

Agreement reached in mediation on the scheme for employment of non-EEA fishers in parts of the Irish sea-fishing fleet

 

Following recent mediation between a number of Government Departments and the International Transport Workers’ Federation on the scheme for employment of non-EEA fishers (outside the European Economic area) in parts of the Irish sea-fishing fleet, a settlement agreement has now been reached and signed by all parties. This mediation was in the context of proceedings taken by the International Transport Workers’ Federation against the relevant Government Departments in relation to the Scheme and a recent High Court judgment on injunctive relief, dated 7th December 2018. The High Court today (30th April 2019) struck out the case.

The relevant Government Departments involved in the Scheme are the Department of Justice and Equality; Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport; Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation; Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine; and the Workplace Relations Commission.

The main terms of the agreement are as follows:

 

Note for Editors:

The Scheme for the employment of non-EEA fishers in parts of the Irish commercial sea-fishing fleet was launched on 15th February 2016 by the then Ministers for Justice and Equality; Agriculture, Food and the Marine; and Business, Enterprise and Innovation.

The Scheme is an extension of the Atypical Working Scheme, administered by the Department of Justice & Equality (Irish Naturalisation & Immigration Service), and was introduced based on a series of recommendations made by the Government Task Force on Non-EEA workers in the Irish Fishing Fleet in December 2015. This Task Force was established following reports of alleged abuses of migrant workers on board Irish fishing vessels. It received presentations and submissions from a number of relevant stakeholders, including the Migrant Rights Centre Ireland and the International Transport Workers Federation.

The Scheme provided for the first time a structured and transparent framework for the employment of non-EEA workers within defined segments of the Irish fishing fleet. The Scheme sets down minimum terms and conditions of employment applicable to these workers which are in line with the general statutory terms and conditions applicable to workers more generally in the State. Ministers welcomed the Scheme as a solution to the risk of exploitation and to guarantee employment rights and protections to non-EEA fishers availing of the Scheme.

Detailed information on the Scheme is available on the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) website, www.inis.gov.ie, or the Government’s commercial sea-fishing network portal, www.fishingnet.ie

File Attachment: 

Terms of Agreement