Tanaiste confirmed the expected date by which healthcare workers will receive their pandemic bonuses.
But Leo Varadkar said the law needs to be changed to ensure the payment is tax-free.
Fine Gael leadership has confirmed that pandemic bonuses for healthcare workers will be paid in February or March.
The government on Wednesday announced a series of measures designed to Thank you to the public and frontline workers for their efforts during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Among the announced measures are a one-time holiday on March 18, as well as a tax exemption of 1,000 euros for frontline medical workers.
Mr Varadkar confirmed that the one-time payment will be issued to more than 100,000 people, including agency staff contracted by the Health Services Executive (HSE), such as nurses, cleaners, and cleaners. and medical staff.
Sinn FeinPearse Doherty welcomed the gesture but claimed there was “a high degree of ambiguity” about who was queuing to receive cash.
“The government has not been clear on this in the last 24 hours,” he told Dail.
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“I would appreciate some clarity regarding how exactly it is determined, who will be able to receive the payment and when they will receive it.”
Mr Doherty said those who felt the “most frustrated” were those taking care of the family, and urged Tanaiste to thank them financially as well.
He added: “Family carers provide very specialized, very intense and very intimate care.”
“Of course, they deserve to be recognized by everyone in this House – but they also deserve more than just a pat on the back or gentle words.
“During the past two years, caregivers have had reduced respite and access to day centers for those they care for.
“As a result of all that, it has saved the state money. Their care has saved the state hundreds of millions of euros a year.
“Family caregivers don’t benefit from the holidays. Their role is 24/7.”
But Mr Varadkar excluded family caregivers from the bounty, saying it was “difficult” to know where to draw the line.
“Where someone works for a private company, let’s say a private hospital, general practitioner, pharmacy or private swap center – they are not covered,” he said.
“There will be very substantial fees being paid to those businesses and companies for the work they’ve done during the pandemic, many already paying their employees bonuses and being able to do so if they would like.”
The Good Gael Leadership said more information will be provided on Thursday regarding the criteria for receiving the bonus.
Mr Varadkar added: “We thought a lot, considered a lot and also consulted.
“We decided that the people who will receive this special additional payment are those who work in medical facilities, wear masks and gowns daily, are employees of the State, have been exposed to with Covid patients every day.
“That’s basically the criteria we applied, and that’s over 100,000 people.”
He continued: “There are different types of caregivers. There are HSE carers, there are carers who work for an agency.
“There are family carers who are receiving carer benefits and carer benefits. There are family carers who are not getting those benefits.
“But for in-home caregivers employed by the HSE, they’re going around a lot of different homes.
“They may have come into contact with dozens or hundreds of people in the course of their work.
“So I think there’s a difference there.”
https://www.thesun.ie/money/8237143/exact-date-pandemic-healthcare-bonus-paid-confirmed-varadkar/ Leo Varadkar reveals when the €1 Covid bonus will be paid