Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice has said it is “farcical” that driving test examiners are currently being let go, despite a driving test waiting list of almost 100,000 people.
The local TD was reacting to recent media reports that examiners, who had supposedly been hired in 2017 and 2018, are set to be let go in the next few months.
“Reports in the media suggest that these testers are being let go so they don’t have to be given permanent contracts,” Deputy Fitzmaurice said.
“Instead, it is supposedly preferred to hire new temporary testers. If true, this is beyond belief – particularly given the number of people awaiting to get a date to sit their full driving test.
“Recent figures indicate that over 66,000 applicants are still waiting on an invitation to sit the test, a further 11,600 had booked their test – while over 28,000 have applied for their test, but are not yet eligible to sit it. It doesn’t make sense that 40 new temporary testers would be hired and then trained to a certain level, only to replace testers who have been hired in recent years.
“Figures show that almost 117,000 tests have been offered, with about 10,000 less of those being conducted so far this year.
“It is not acceptable that young people have to wait months and months to attain their full driving licence. Many of these applicants have job offers which depend on them being able to travel independently, and the backlog is forcing some of them to turn down these offers,” he concluded.