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Thursday 1 June 2023 Dublin: 15°C
Alamy Stock Photo File photo of Tánaiste Leo Varadkar.
Former Fine Gael party secretary to take claim over being forced to retire at 65
The party will face the Workplace Relations Commission on Thursday morning.

FINE GAEL IS set to face the Workplace Relations Commission (WRC) after a former female secretary claimed she was forced into retirement. 

The former secretary alleges that she was forced to retire at age 65 and that the party refused her request for a longer working career, despite arranging a one-year extension for a male secretary who had turned 65 four months earlier. 

The remote hearing will take place on Thursday morning. 

“This age and gender discrimination complaint has formed the basis for the employment equality adjudication by the WRC,” a statement on behalf of the former secretary said. 

The statement said the decision to force her retirement was made by the party’s trustees, including the Tánaiste and party leader Leo Varadkar, during the 2020 election campaign.

“The issue of mandatory retirement at 65, and then having to spend two years on the dole before qualifying for a state pension, emerged as a major election issue,” it said. 

“During that January-February election campaign senior Fine Gael politicians repeatedly stated that their policy was that all employees should be allowed to remain in their jobs, beyond 65 or until 70, if they wished to and enjoyed good health.”

Fine Gael did not respond to a request for comment before the time of publication.