For Written Answer on : 05/04/2022
Question Number(s): 529 Question Reference(s): 18173/22
Department: Social Protection
Asked by: David Stanton T.D.
To ask the Minister for Social Protection the current policy with respect to remote working options for staff in her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter.
Civil Service Departments and Offices have been working in line with Government Covid-19 guidance, which provides for home working to continue where possible.
As an essential service, staff in my Department have continued, throughout the pandemic, to work both on site and remotely to deliver services to our customers.
The number of staff who are working remotely at any one time across all business areas of the Department is approximately 3,300 or 50% of the total staffing number and has remained relatively constant throughout the pandemic, as part of temporary working arrangements put in place by local business areas.
The Government has confirmed its support of blended working in the Civil Service and the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform has developed an overarching Blended Working Policy Framework to support consistency of implementation of blended working across the Civil Service. In conjunction with this Framework, an application process is being developed to allow staff to apply for blended working into the future.
Following on from the publication of the Framework, my Department will develop and publish its own Blended Working Policy. As part of this policy implementation, subject to public health advice, an application process will be made available to facilitate staff applying for a range of blended working arrangements in accordance with the new policy and to plan for longer term blended working arrangements for staff, in line with principles defined as part of the agreed Central Framework.