“The PSC Targets Those Who Can Least Afford To Fight It”

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From top: Then Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, after he registered for a Public Services Card in 2016; Bus shelter ad for the new National Childcare Payment scheme

Last night.

In The Irish Times, Kitty Holland reported:

The State’s decision to require parents to have a public services card to qualify for new national childcare payments is “illegal” and “highly discriminatory”, the Irish Council for Civil Liberties (ICCL) has warned.

…Elizabeth Farries, privacy expert with ICCL, said the people who could least afford to lose out on the enhanced supports in the national childcare scheme were those “on the breadline”.

We’ve seen this for a number of years now, that the PSC targets those who can least afford to fight it. Those in receipt of social welfare payments, pensioners, students who need maintenance grants, they’ve all been forced to hand over their personal data in exchange for services to which they are already entitled.”

Public services card requirement for childcare payments ‘illegal’ (Kitty Holland, The Irish Times)

Meanwhile…

On Monday…

Cianan Brennan in the Irish Examiner, reported:

A languages teacher in rural Ireland broke her ankle but was denied welfare benefit by the Department of Social Protection because she refused to get a public services card (PSC).

The woman, who suffered the injury in September while walking in the countryside, had to undergo surgery. She was housebound after the accident and out of work without income for seven weeks.

Teacher denied access to social welfare after breaking her ankle and refusing to get PSC (Cianan Brennan, Irish Examiner)

Previously: The Sting

Public Services Card on Broadsheet

12 thoughts on ““The PSC Targets Those Who Can Least Afford To Fight It”

  1. Dr.Fart

    another example of the govnernment not caring about the citizens other than how to monetize us in any way possible. in this instance, selling our personal data, even if it means breaking the law.. ‘the party of law and order’ me hole. they’ve already sold off every scrap and corner of the land to foreign investors, now they’ll sell us if they can. we are nothing but a hindrance to FG. they see us as merely voters and tax payers, nothing more.

    1. A Person

      What utter BS. Do you think that the state should not know who they are paying benefits to? Hey I need childcare support, but sure, you don’t have to know who I am or why I need it? Lets just hand out taxpayers money to anyone who asks for it. Oops, I forgot, you don’t pay tax.

  2. Clampers Outside

    Reading that, you’d think that the DPC were not in agreement that the DEASP are legally cleared to use the card for the services they provide.
    Just in case anyone else thought that, the DPC is agreeable on the legal use of the card for DEASP services.

      1. Clampers Outside

        And it’s a “Department” of government.

        I really don’t get all the hoo-ha over this. It’s the government, and the government is over the departments.

        I for one would prefer an efficient central source of my data than each department holding pieces of data which can only be a more expensive and highly inefficient way to keep data in this day and age.

        Not to mention, the Depth of Children and Youth Affairs is a relatively “new” dept that has evolved since the 1950s out of the Dept of the Gaeltacht, has had six name changes, and thirteen function transfers in and out of its remit…. it’s still the one bloody government.

        There’s a lot of money being wasted arguing over a dept having or not having data, access to it, etc. And stupid points being made about monetising the data.

        Again, at the end of it, it is the one bloody government.

        Stupid Dp&Gdpr over application is all I see in this. I still haven’t found any argument to suggest otherwise.

  3. Just Sayin

    Isn’t the issue that this scheme is being run by the Department of Children and Youth Affairs rather than the Department of Employment and Social Protection, hence the Data Protectiopn Commissioners concerns about data sharing.

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