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Free parking scheme to be phased out; Dublin Health Care Workers will suffer again

Dublin’s healthcare workers will have to pay for street parking again from next month.

On 19 March, the HSE announced that parking charges for workers in hospitals and health care facilities had been discontinued for the duration of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The particular scheme allowed the hospital staffs and healthcare workers to park their vehicles near to hospitals for free. But it has now declared that the scheme is ‘unsustainable’ as the county enters its first wave of regional lockdown.

The Dublin City Council said it had ordered its parking enforcement contractor Dublin Street Parking Services to “exercise discretion” in terms of clamping cars on roads and streets surrounding hospitals, the Health Department and HSE offices.

It was stated in a memo sent yesterday by DCC chief executive Owen Keegan that, from 1 September, parking enforcement for healthcare staff in town will start again.  

The memo states, “It has been decided, with considerable regret, that the enforcement concession in respect of HSE staff parking in the vicinity of hospitals, cannot be sustained.”

“At the time it was introduced it was not a major issue in the various locations where it applied, as there was limited demand for on-street parking.”

“However, with the resumption in economic activity there has been a significant recovery in traffic volumes and in on-street parking demand.”

Keegan said the concession will end after August 31 and daily parking enforcement would resume, as it is considered inconvenient for certain people living near hospitals to be unable to access parking near their homes at some times.

Sinn Fein’s Seamus McGrath mentioned in his statement that, “Healthcare workers deserve the city’s support and solidarity. Free parking is the least that they can expect at this time.” McGrattan also written to the Minister of Health for help ‘to work together’ to find a solution.

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