Minister Noel Treacy presses Italian authorities on Discrimination against Irish lecturers
Mr Noel Treacy T.D., Minister for European Affairs today raised the ongoing discrimination against Irish lecturers in Italian universities in bilateral consultations with Senator Roberto Antonione, Under Secretary of State at the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Minister Treacy urged the Italian Government to take action now to end all instances of discrimination against non-Italian lecturers and to bring their employment conditions fully into line with EU law. 'I am seriously concerned' said Minister Treacy 'that Irish citizens working for many years in Italian universities continue to be treated differently to their Italian counterparts. Such practices go against our shared interest in ensuring that workers' rights are protected throughout the EU.'
Note for editors: Irish citizens are among non-Italian nationals working as lecturers 'lettori' in Italian universities who allege that they have been denied access to wage increases, promotion, pension rights and holiday pay because of their nationality. The European Commission is currently taking infringement proceedings against the Italian Government at the European Court of Justice for failing to introduce measures to comply with a 2001 ECJ ruling ordering these discriminatory practices to be ended. If the Commission's action is successful, a daily fine would be imposed on the Italian Government until all universities are fully in compliance with EU employment law which prohibits discrimination on the grounds of nationality.