The minister's stance undermines Fine Gael's attempt to attack Fianna Fáil spending demands. Ms Doherty performed a spectacular U-turn yesterday as she ruled out means-testing child benefit as part of the effort to reduce childcare costs. Just days earlier, she indicated she was prepared to examine cutting child benefit for higher earners to pay for childcare. Yet, the minister listed a string of promises including providing "free childcare, pre-education, free healthcare and free parental leave". However, it is now unclear how she will pay for any of them having now ruled out means-testing child benefit. No further information was forthcoming from the Department of Social Protection last night on how much the minister envisages being spent to provide these free measures in the short term or how that investment will be paid for. Ms Doherty opened up the child benefit means-testing debate while attending a conference last Friday. But her commitment to reassess an expert … [Read more...] about Minister makes U-turn after hint of means-testing child benefit
Child labour how much they get paid
Let’s address “when’s it due?”. It’s a tricky question if you know for sure that your interlocutor is pregnant. If you don’t, it’s potentially disastrous. The first time someone asked me a similar question, I was a 19-year-old student. I was standing in the queue at McDonald’s. In front of me was a woman with her child. The little boy, who must have been about five, was bored and restless. He jumped from foot to foot. He swung from his mother’s arm. He twirled around and caught my eye. Then he hopped forward, patted me on the stomach and asked: “When are you having yours?” Aged 19, I was built like Olive Oyl. Sideways on I looked like a golf club. So I laughed. The boy laughed. Yet his mother, who was heavily pregnant herself, apologised so profusely I worried she might go into labour. Because she knew (as I too know now that I’m twice the woman I used to be) that asking … [Read more...] about You can’t ask me that: Is it ever OK to ask someone when they are due?
So that’s that, is it? One set of inconclusive local election results, and the undertakers at New Labour Bereavement Services are polishing the brass handles of Jeremy Corbyn’s political coffin once again. They have done it so often and fervently these last two and a half years that a class action for repetitive strain injury could be imminent. They had the Brasso out when he didn’t wear a tie or sing God Save The Queen, when Hilary Benn resigned, and with every coup that crashed on take-off. They summoned the priest to read the last rites when Theresa May called the snap election that would bury the entire party. Now they’re digging a hole in the ground because Labour didn’t win Barnet. (Of course it didn’t. The party is so riven by antisemitism that it is barely three years since it had a Jewish leader.) If history teaches that the Corbyn obituary tends to be premature, New Labour’s laureates of entitlement are pitifully slow … [Read more...] about Corbyn has proven time and time again that he’s not going anywhere, but it seems the tedious relics of New Labour are still in denial
After White House chief of staff John Kelly pressured President Donald Trump last fall to install his top deputy, Kirstjen Nielsen, atop the Department of Homeland Security, the president lost his temper when conservative allies argued she wasn't sufficiently hardline on immigration. "You didn't tell me she was a [expletive] George W. Bush person," Trump growled. After Kelly told Fox News Channel's Bret Baier in a January interview that Trump's immigration views had not been "fully informed" during the campaign and had since "evolved," the president berated Kelly in the Oval Office - his shouts so loud they could be heard through the doors. And just 11 days ago, Kelly grew so frustrated on the day that Trump fired Veterans Affairs Secretary David Shulkin that Nielsen and Defense Secretary James Mattis both tried to calm him down and offer pep talks, according to three people with knowledge of the incident. "I'm out of here, guys," Kelly said - comments some interpreted as a … [Read more...] about The inside story of how Trump’s Chief of Staff lost his power
In Britain this week, larger companies are having to make their gender pay gaps public for the first time. But just over the Channel in Belgium, transparency on how much men and women are paid has been standard for years. Belgium has one of the very lowest gender pay gaps in both Europe and the OECD, beating out countries with a more world-renowned reputation for gender equality, like Sweden, the Norway, and Iceland. The latest 2017 figures from the OECD show the median monthly wage of a Belgian man is 3.3 per cent high than a Belgian woman – compared to an average gap across the EU of 19.2 per cent. In the public sector, women are actually paid more on an hourly basis. Read more Gender pay gap latest: 1,500 firms fail to meet reporting deadline Belgian pay wasn’t always so equal – the gap has closed rapidly in recent years – from 13.6 in 2000, 11.5 per cent in 2005 and 7 per cent in 2010. Moving towards equal pay has been a deliberate government … [Read more...] about How Belgium is defeating the gender pay gap