501. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the services that require a public services card; if a public services card is required to open a post office account; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 51840/17 asked on 05 Dec 2017 - Public Services Card Provision)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): A Public Services Card is a physical token that may be issued to a person once they successfully complete a SAFE 2 identity verification process.
SAFE 2 identity verification is currently required for:
- Access to Social Welfare Services (including Child Benefit and Treatment Benefits)
- First time adult passport applicants in the state
- Replacement of lost, stolen or damaged passports issued prior to January 2005, w...

11. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform the details of the media campaign designed to promote the public services card; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 46856/17 asked on 09 Nov 2017 - Public Services Card)

Deputy Dara Calleary: There has been quite considerable controversy around the public services card. The Data Protection Commissioner is investigating issues around it under section 10 of the Data Protection Act. Can the Minister outline how much money is being used to promote the use of the public services card and whether the expenditure of that money is being suspended pending the outcome of the data protection review?
 ...

32. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection her plans to extend the scope of the public services card; the measures currently in place to ensure data protection and confidentiality; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 39693/17 asked on 20 Sep 2017 - Public Services Card)

Deputy Willie O’Dea: I am aware that there are 2.7 million public services cards in circulation but as the Minister is aware, concerns have been expressed recently about plans to extend the scope of the public service card and about how confidentiality of the information contained on the card can be maintained.
 ...

1586. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection the number of persons who have been issued a public services card in each year since first introduced; the waiting time to issue a public services card; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 36595/17 asked on 26 Jul 2017 - Public Services Card)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): My Department commenced issuing Public Services Cards (PSC) on a phased basis from October 2011. Since then it has issued over 2.71 million PSCs. A breakdown of the number of PSCs issued per annum is -
PSCs issued from 2012 to 2017 (to date)
 Year 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017(to date 21/7/17) PSCs issued 4,001 79,773 355,721 689,627 627,943 610,519 347,537 Running total 4,001 83,774 435,494 1,125,121 1,753,064...

360. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection if it is mandatory to attend a SAFE appointment for the new public services card; if a person does not attend, if this will have negative consequences on the current social protection payment to the person; and if he will make a statement on the matter. (Question 20551/16 asked on 12 Jul 2016 - Public Services Card)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Leo Varadkar): The Public Services Card (PSC) is designed to replace other cards within the public sector such as the social services card and free travel pass and to make it easy for providers of public services to verify the identity of customer. A PSC is issued following a registration process called SAFE, which involves the capture of an individual’s photograph and signature and the verification of identity data. In most cases, the person attends one ...

383. Deputy Willie O’Dea asked the Minister for Social Protection the projected cost of the full roll out of public services card, the way this has varied since the project was initiated, the number of PSCs issued to date, the projected number to be issued in 2013, the schemes that will be prioritised in the roll out; the date for completion of the scheme; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 27132/13 asked on 11 Jun 2013 - Public Services Card)

Minister for Social Protection (Deputy Joan Burton): The Department of Social Protection has developed, in conjunction with a number of other Government Departments, a rules based standard for establishing and authenticating an individual’s identity for the purposes of access to public services.
This programme of work, which is known as Standard Authentication Framework Environment, or SAFE for short, also provided for the introduction of a Public Services Card (PSC) to enable individual’s to ga...