Dáil Éireann - Volume 407 - 18 April, 1991
Written Answers. - Work Permit Application.
Mr. Allen Mr. Allen
66. Mr. Allen asked the Minister for Labour the reason an application for a work permit by a person (details supplied) in Cork was subjected to a seven month delay.
Minister for Labour (Mr. B. Ahern) Bertie Ahern
Minister for Labour (Mr. B. Ahern): Work permit applications are considered in accordance with the provisions of the Aliens Act, 1935, Aliens Orders, 1946 and 1975 and the European Communities (Aliens) Regulations, 1977.
Policy in relation to the granting or refusal of a work permit is based on the need to ensure that employment opportunities arising here are reserved, as far as possible, for Irish and EC nationals.
The granting of a work permit is not considered unless an employer can show that, despite all reasonable efforts, no suitably qualified Irish or European Community nationals are available for the  position in question or unless the application falls into one of the following categories: (a) the prospective employee is a key worker and a substantial amount of high quality employment for Irish-EC nationals will arise as a result of his-her employment; (b) the prospective employee is married to an Irish or EC national or a dependant or child aged under 21 of an Irish or EC national; (c) the person is coming as part of an officially recognised exchange programme; (d) the prospective employee is an officially recognised refugee.
Because of the current high levels of unemployment, my Department who operate a restrictive work permit policy in relation to the employment of non-EC nationals, must be vigilant in ensuring that permits are issued only where it is clear that no suitably qualified Irish or EC national is available for the position on offer.
Non-EC nationals in respect of whom work permits are issued must also satisfy immigration regulations.
In relation to the particular application in question, a work permit would not ordinarily be granted. The position was that of administrative assistant and the salary was given as £65 per week.
Subsequent to receipt of the application, the employer was asked to advertise further to ensure that no Irish or EC national was available for the position. Also, inquiries had to be made to ensure that no State moneys were being used to fund the salary of the prospective employee as it appeared that all the other employees of the organisation in question were on a social employment programme.
When my Department's inquiries were completed, it was decided that, as an exceptional measure, a work permit should issue and I decided that the usual fee should be waived. If the applicant had not been a charitable organisation, the application would have been refused.
Dáil Éireann 407 Written Answers. Work Permit Application.