Won’t Somebody Please Think Of The Children?


Junior minister John Halligan

This afternoon.

John Halligan, Independent Alliance Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development at the Department of Business, Enterprise and Innovation has been named as the person who asked senior female civil servant whether she was married with children during a job interview.

The Workplace Relations Commission heard Mr Halligan, enquired of the unnamed woman:

“I shouldn’t be asking you this, but…. are you a married woman? Do you have children? How old are your children.”

Following the ruling, Mr Halligan told the Irish Independent::

“I was simply trying to put the interviewee at ease….“All of my staff start at 10am because they need to get their kids to school and can finish early if they need to.”

‘I was trying to put her at ease’ – Civil servant awarded €7k after John Halligan asked was she married during interview (Independent.ie)


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85 thoughts on “Won’t Somebody Please Think Of The Children?

  1. Andyourpointiswhatexactly?

    Yerrah, I’d say he meant nothing by it. He won’t make the same mistake again, though.

    1. Cian

      Ha! I’d say he will make the same mistake again (or something equally stupid). He knew it was wrong to ask ““I shouldn’t be asking you this, but…. ” but asked anyway.

      *He* isn’t paying the 30K – why should he care?

    2. GiggidyGoo

      And, to be clear, this is what is Minister material. Any sign of the Cath Scan for Waterford yet?

  2. Jake38

    “All of my staff start at 10am…….”

    In case you were wondering what was happening to all those taxes you’re paying….

    1. realPolithicks

      You’re right its a scandal that an employer would actually make an effort to give their employees some flexibility in their work schedule….

      1. Milo

        It’s obvious he is not paying her with his own money. It’s easy to squander other people’s money and I’d say you know all about it.

  3. Ram Trilogy

    He meant nothing by it. Not a fan of his but get some cop on. Parasites on this site , trying to jump on every innocuous little sound bite and create an angry mob.

    Getting very sick of it. Stick to proper journalism and insight.

    1. Cian

      He cost the State €30K *directly* by that one sentence. If you add all the legal, court time, witnesses, etc it’s probably well in excess of €100K. That’s a lot of VAT!

          1. Nigel

            Indoctrinated to think it’s a actually a complete lack of professionalism that brought this about, in fairness.

        1. Reach For The Stars

          You “think” so do you?

          How about the rise in employment rights legislation that now makes it illegal to discriminate on grounds of gender?

          You don’t “think” at all, from reading your screeds here, all you do is regurgitate alt right talking points

    1. Cian

      I assume that she didn’t get the job and felt she was discriminated against.
      The 7k damages may be for missed earnings (e.g. if it were a better paid position).

    2. Reach For The Stars

      How is it a ‘simple question’? It’s an unlawful question in that context, can’t you read the article you moron?

  4. The Ghost of Starina

    If you have to start a question with “I shouldn’t be asking this”, don’t ask it.

  5. Lilly

    My last employer tried to elicit the same information by asking multiple indirect questions and dancing around it in the hope that I would volunteer the information. I didn’t.

    It wasn’t the only red flag that I ignored unfortunately. A waiter arrived mid- interview with his lunch and he gave him dog’s abuse because the bread on his sandwich wasn’t sufficiently toasted.

      1. Lilly

        @Gringo – Oh, such wit.

        The job paid well, and I figured it would fit the bill while I looked around for a more pleasant employer if he turned out to be a total bell end and not just someone having a bad day.

          1. Zoella

            Yes, it’s great that we can all vote with our feet and take our talents elsewhere. Ask yourself why you resent that.

          2. Milo

            Nah, just thought he would be glad to be rid of a self entitled moany whinge bag. Plenty of good people available to do good work and enjoy it.

          3. Zoella

            “self entitled moany whinge bag.”

            Milo, Milo, Milo… do you ever stop talking about yourself.

          4. Milo

            I bet you were the waitress that ruined the poor guys toast…. and I presume you take your “talents” elsewhere quite a lot.

          5. Lilly

            Poor Milo has been triggered. Boo hoo. Most likely another miserable sod learning the hard way that unless they behave like decent human beings, no one will stick around.

          6. Milo

            You wish Lilly. Milo is grand. he doesn’t sit in restaurants looking for work from a person he hates and distrusts trying to catch him out. He doesn’t go looking for insult where there is none. And I certainly don’t have an irrational hatred of a particular sex that colours how I see the world. Your posts indicate you are one of the more toxic type of feminists who define success by how much they stick it to the man. While giving you a couple of short term wins and a few likes on social media, you know internally that to define yourself by how much you defeat another is ultimately a spiralling loop of despair that leads to further feelings of worthlessness and lack of personal control. Its never too late to change.

    1. Milo

      What’s it like sitting there hating your interviewer and still taking the job? I’d hope I’d never be so fake.

      1. Reach For The Stars

        hahaha ROFLMAO

        Hey pot, this is kettle here, here tell me this I know I shouldn’t be asking you this, but what colour are you?

      2. Zoella

        There’s a big difference between ‘hating your interviewer’ and having misgivings about them but giving them the benefit of the doubt, you twit.

  6. Frilly Keane

    Ah lads
    Ye can keep this ball on the ground and keep trying to get a daycent pull on it or ye can step back and take a deep breath of cop on

    This candidate’s home life was none of the Minister’s business
    And is no indicator of whether they were the best candidate for the job

    And the gimp from Rinne tried to make that it was or might be
    Otherwise he would never has asked
    In fact the question would never have occurred t’him
    If it was a relevant criteria for the role
    He would have asked all the shortlisted candidates

    Betcha he didn’t

    I think that girl was short-changed with the 7 n’half k meself

    1. Reach For The Stars

      Totally agree. She’s now put a target on her head that says ‘trouble-maker’ and will be lawfully discriminated against for any further opportunities.

    2. A person

      How do you know he did not ask all the candidates? Bet he didn’t is a bs comment. Asking someone if they are married or not, with kids, is a legitimate question. Tends to indicate if they have settled down and are willing to work….

      1. Frilly Keane

        Its an indicator of nothing relevant to their capacity and suitability for the role they have applied for

        That a girl is fertile?
        That she has a fella?
        That she’s got the ride?

        I bet you bananas ta’ brown envelopes
        He never asked the male interviewees about their family structure

        1. A person

          You bet again – you don’t know.

          Asking if you are married is a proper question, man or woman. Why is is sexist? PC gone mad. Fertile, fella, ride all your words, which frankly are demeaning.

  7. Gringo

    In the real world, employers like to know who and what they are employing, and no amount of hysteria from over protected, overpaid, self regarding so called public servants will change that.

    1. Frilly Keane

      ah not really
      only Family owned business would be more into knowing who they’re bringing in
      Institutional and Large MN Employers would be more diligent on the role requirements and the candidate’s suitability and credentials

      Halligan was out of his depth tbh

      1. A person

        Of course it should. Get real. Have you ever employed anyone? All aspects of their CV including personal circumstances need to be taken into account. The fact that someone gets 7k for being asked a question is nonsense.

        1. Frilly Keane

          I think that girl should have got 70k

          to have to go all the way to the WRC before any contrition was offered is a disgrace
          and fair play to her to sticking it out
          many many just chicken out

          1. A person

            Why? Why should anyone get this money for being asked a personal question in an interview. If you have to work with a person, any person, then you need to know their personal circumstances. Otherwise employ a robot.

          2. Reach For The Stars

            oh shut up a person. You manifestly haven’t a clue what you’re on about, just another reactionary dolt mouthing off on the internet

  8. Anomanomanom

    So his staff, that I assume the state pays, can start at 10 and leave early if they need to. Does the salary reflect this or is it a perk

    1. Reach For The Stars

      It’s called flexi time and it is widely available across the public sector

      10-4 are core hours and you can make up the rest of your working week requirement with flexi time

      You could have googled this you know instead of shooting off your stupid mouth about stuff you clearly know nothing about

      1. Anomanomanom

        Where does he state flexi time. You assume its flexi time. And I work in the public sector. Its not widely available, its certain areas only that get it. So maybe think before being a dumb bottom.

      2. Milo

        And you wonder why the homeless go untended, why the banks run rings around us, why the health sector is a mess. Because people like you dawdle in and out when you like from your unsackiable jobs while gorging at your subsidised canteens and driving home from your free car-parks.

  9. A person

    Of course it should. Get real. Have you ever employed anyone? All aspects of their CV including personal circumstances need to be taken into account. The fact that someone gets 7k for being asked a question is nonsense.

  10. A person

    @oh shut up a person. You manifestly haven’t a clue what you’re on about, just another reactionary dolt mouthing off on the internet

    Rubbish, as an employer, parent and a public servant, I think I might be qualified in this regard. Why not reply to the message I sent as opposed to attacking me? Play the man not the ball etc.

    1. Reach For The Stars

      I did reply to your message

      I clearly pointed out the person writing it was an idiot

      Anything else you need?

Comments are closed.

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