Meanwhile, At The Public Accounts Committee

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Public Services Card; Data Protection Commissioner Helen Dixon at a meeting of the Public Accounts Committee this morning; the Public Accounts Committee

This morning.

The Data Protection Commissioner Helen Dixon is appearing before the Public Accounts Committee.

It follows Ms Dixon finding that there is no legal basis for the State demanding the use of the Public Services Card in order to access a range of public services beyond social welfare payments.

Ms Dixon ordered that Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection Regina Doherty’s department stop issuing new PSCs, with immediate effect, to people seeking a service outside of her department, and that it delete the supporting documentation – such as utility bills, etc – that the department has retained on the 3.2million card holders.

Ms Doherty is categorical her department will not be complying with these orders and has said the State will challenge the findings of Ms Dixon – in court, if needs be.

Meanwhile…

Irish Times journalist Jack Horgan-Jones has obtained documents [above], under the Freedom of Information Act, outlining radio ads that the Road Safety Authority planned to use but scrapped.

It’s understood they were scrapped after Minister for Transport Shane Ross announced in May 2018 that applicants for the driver theory test would not have to produce a PSC to satisfy identification requirements, reportedly after the Attorney General told the minister such a mandatory requirement was not legal.

This is despite Minister Doherty saying over the past few weeks that the State will challenge the findings of the DPC based on “incredibly strong” advice from the Attorney General.

Asked about Mr Ross’s announcement, Ms Doherty told the Dáil last night:

“I cannot say why the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Deputy Ross, said what he said other than to say I am not responsible for the delivery of policy…

“I cannot say why he said what he said. I am only responsible for delivery of policy in my Department. I do not know if he got legal advice and to answer the same question, I do not know if the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade got legal advice on its policy formation.”

Watch the Public Accounts Committee proceedings live here

8 thoughts on “Meanwhile, At The Public Accounts Committee

  1. eoin

    So Regina doesn’t know why Shane Ross dropped the requirement for her PSC for driver documentation.
    She also doesn’t know why Simon Coveney dropped the requirement for her PSC for passport applications.
    Presumably, she also doesn’t know why Charlie Flanagan has dropped the requirement for her PSC for citizenship applications [revealed this morning, the application form has been amended to exclude the requirement].

    So three ministers have dropped the requirement for her PSC and she doesn’t know why? Is she a total numpty on top of being a failed businesswoman, social media snowflake and moaner about being blanked by colleagues in the corridor.

    1. eoin

      So, that’s 3-1 to the Data Protection Commissioner (Zappone is demanding the PSC for childcare, the paper alternative won’t be available for months).

  2. garrett

    So a company director who made multiple breaches of Company Law is suddenly an expert on Data Protection:

    Failure to comply with Section 202 of the Companies Act.
    Failure to complete her declaration of TD’s interests correctly
    Contravention of Company Law by taking large company loans from her failed business

  3. Ian-O

    Am I missing something here? I have no PSC card and I never and I mean never find reason to contact any government departments for any reason at all? Outside of renewing my drivers license and passport in the next year or two, I have thankfully very little to do with the Irish state and long may that reign?

    As for these ads, what would you expect from the Irish state but Bullshine.

    1. Joe Small

      “I have thankfully very little to do with the Irish state and long may that reign”

      I’m assuming you don’t even live in Ireland then?

      1. Ian-O

        Full quote from me reads as:

        ”Outside of renewing my drivers license and passport in the next year or two, I have thankfully very little to do with the Irish state and long may that reign?”

        With that in mind, you are either an idiot, have problems reading or are just another pointless online troll who likes to invent points to challenge.

        I’d say its all three.

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