A public consultation on the EU ‘Temporary Agency Work Directive’ will take place in advance of the transposition of the Directive into Irish national law by December 5 2011. The Directive provides the legislative basis to ensure the protection of temporary agency workers by applying the principle of equal treatment. This provides the basic working and employment conditions (pay, working time, overtime, breaks, rest periods, night work, holidays and public holidays) of temporary agency workers shall be, for the duration of their assignment at a user (hirer) undertaking, as if they had been recruited directly by that undertaking to occupy the same job.
Under the provisions of the Directive, it is open to social partners at national level to reach an agreement which can, for example, define a waiting period during which an agency worker could be assigned without necessarily acquiring the full range of entitlements as a directly-recruited employee in a user (hirer) undertaking.
Through the public consultation, the views of a cross-section of interested parties are being sought including, agency workers, employment agencies and user (hirer) undertakings to whom agency workers are assigned by an employment agency. The consultation is a first key step in preparing the necessary bill to implement the Directive by the due date.