Alliance Health spokesperson Paula Bradshaw MLA has welcomed initial success in the campaign to end car parking charges for health workers.
Health Minister Robin Swann announced health and social care staff will receive free parking at Trusts until March 31, 2021, following additional funding being allocated to his Department.
“I welcome that car parking charges will not apply for health and social Care workers until March 31,” said Ms Bradshaw.
“This was always in effect an extra tax, which was particularly unfair given it only applied at some sites, it applied to shift workers who have no other realistic transport options, and it applied to people still awaiting back-pay from promises made with reference to past strike action which they undertook so unwillingly.
“People who are on the frontline working in public service should not be charged extra just to go to work, which is in effect what car park charges for staff mean. The charges are a nonsense anyway as they cost as much to run as they bring in and they are not restricting vehicle access, because the nature of the shift work rarely means any other alternatives are realistic.
“This is only an initial success as I and many others regard such charges as scurrilous and pointless, and we should be looking to abolish them permanently for staff on all health and social care sites.”