Independent TD for Wexford, Verona Murphy has called on the Government to introduce an online option for completion of ‘Safe Pass’ courses. Currently the only option for safe pass courses is to attend in person at a training centre. These courses are currently suspended due to Covid-19 restrictions.
Deputy Murphy highlighted the need for the courses to be provided online,
“In circumstances where this Government says there is a shortage of houses, coupled with a long known shortage of construction workers, it beggar’s belief that Government have failed to provide an online platform to complete a safe pass course, particularly when so many are now sitting at home unemployed. The completion of a safe pass course is an essential health and safety requirement for entry onto a building site. We need to ensure that these courses can be accessed by people looking to work in the building industries. Lockdown restrictions provide the perfect opportunity for people to complete these requirements, particularly when so many are now sitting at home unemployed”
Deputy Murphy also referred to the consequences that cancelling safe pass courses will have,
“The last thing we need are more barriers put in place of those who are actually trying to build much-needed houses. Everything is linked, and one delay has a knock-on effect on many other things. For example, if workers cannot complete safe pass courses, then builders cannot employ them, thus slowing down and increasing the costs of building.”
Deputy Murphy concluded,
“Unfortunately, COVID-19 restrictions have caused massive unemployment. Government should be doing all in their power to allow people to upskill and complete course requirements during lockdowns, to get as many people ready to return to work as possible. That starts by providing online options for completing courses such as the Safe Pass. Every other EU country has a provision to complete this course online. This is about leadership, foresight, and being proactive. We cannot continue to lag behind.”