Local man charged €50 for thermometer during coronavirus emergency claims Laois Offaly TD

Leinster Express Reporter

Reporter:

Leinster Express Reporter

A man was charged €50 for a thermometer according to a Laois Offaly TD who has called for an end to businesses to end profiteering from the coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic.

The Sinn Féin TD Brian Stanley says a small number of businesses in his constituency are engaged in excessive charging and profiteering on the back of the crisis.

"One constituent has informed me that when he went to buy a thermometer locally in the past few days, he was charged the outrageous price of €50.

"He needed to have a thermometer as some members of his household have serious health issues.

"I am appealing to businesses not to exploit the pandemic, and to remember that many families have less income than normal," he said.

Last week, Deputy Stanley called on the Government to intervene to outlaw a number of unfair practices appearing during the Covid-19 pandemic.

He called on the Government to intervene to outlaw a number of unfair practices appearing during the Covid-19 pandemic.

“That a small number of GP’s and creches are currently engaged in unfair profiteering during the crisis and these practices must be legislated against if necessary.

“Over the past week, I have received complaints from constituents that some GP’s and creches are engaging in unfair practices.

“People have contacted me saying that creches are continuing to charge full price even though their doors are shut.

“Parents are being told that unless they continue to pay their fees their child will not have a place when the doors re-open.

“These are parents who have either recently lost their job due to the pandemic or are still working but will need to find and pay for alternative arrangements for their children.

“I’ve also been informed of GP’s asking patients over the phone for their credit card details when they phone with potential Covid-19 symptoms.

“Earlier this week some GP’s were charging patients an additional €30 for a Covid 19 phone consultation, despite the fact they are already being paid €30 by the Government for this consultation. I raised this in the Dáil with the Minister for Health this week and he confirmed that GP’s should not be loading an additional charge on patients. These are hard pressed workers and families who are enduring significant stress and should not be taken advantage of.

“The Government needs to act as a matter of urgency to stamp out these sharp practices.

“I am calling on the relevant Ministers; Zappone, and Harris to meet with Early Childhood Ireland and the Irish Medical Organisation to tell them in no uncertain terms that this is not on and that those who are in the most difficult of circumstances must be protected.

“If necessary, we should enact legislation to stamp out this ruthless profiteering,” he said.