Friday 13 December 2019

Relative of worker let have job against HSE rules

Michael Brennan

THE official in charge of running the controversial Skills programme was responsible for allowing a worker's relative to get a health service job in a breach of HSE recruitment procedures.

The statement was made at the Dail's Public Accounts committee yesterday about Alan Smith, the general manager of the Skills programme. This was a €60m fund designed to provide training for the 32,000 HSE support staff.

But the HSE's internal audit found that a relative of a member of the Skills' steering committee had been directed to a recruitment agency and then placed on a temporary contract with the office.

At the Dail's Public Account committee, Fine Gael TD Bernard Allen asked about why this person had been subsequently given a full-time HSE job -- without any internal or external competition taking place.

HSE director of human resources Sean McGrath defended the person as a "very good employee" but confirmed that proper recruitment procedures had not been followed.

And he told the committee that the person responsible was Mr Smith.

Mr Allen described him as the "key man".

The committee heard that Mr Smith retired early from the HSE last year. He received a pension top-up in the form of added years.

Irish Independent

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