Senator Ged Nash

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Ged is committed to tackling low pay, campaigning for a Living Wage for all and improving workers’ rights. He held the first ever Government Forum on a Living Wage and is now advocating that the State and all its agencies become Living Wage employers.

While a Minister, he established the Low Pay Commission and accepted its recommendation to increase the National Minimum Wage to €9.15, improving the pay of more than 124,000 people at the beginning of this year. He also introduced new Collective Bargaining Legislation to allow workers, aided by a trade union, to advance claims about pay and conditions and have these decided by the Labour Court based on comparisons with other companies.

Ged also introduced new wage setting mechanisms and re-introduced registered employment agreements on a sound legal footing. He commissioned and published the first ever study into zero and low hour contracts and is determined to work to end exploitative employment contracts and bogus self-employment.

As the former Minister with responsibility for SMEs, Ged is also conscious of the need for flexibility in the workforce, access to credit, a skilled workforce and issues around too much red tape. He amended the Credit Guarantee Bill, overhauled Microfinance Ireland to make it easier to lend money to micro enterprises and chaired the Retail Consultation Forum with a focus on reviving town centres. Ged was also centrally involved in the promotion at home and abroad of the Year of Irish Design, ID2015.

Elected to the Seanad, Ged will continue to fight for a decent working life for all. This means decent pay and conditions and job security. It also means support for startups and SMEs who create these jobs. His track record in Government shows that he can deliver for working people and he will continue to do so in the Seanad.

A lifelong Drogheda United supporter, Ged is also interested in the the arts, in particular theatre and Irish crafts and design. He is married to Marion Haggins.