Responding to the Government’s partial roll-back on Community Employment (CE) cuts, the Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Social Protection Aengus Ó Snodaigh said that the Minister left CE schemes in an “impossible situation” for seven months and called for greater investment.
Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:
“I welcome the fact that the Minister is beginning to see the error of her ways with regards to CE cuts. The reality however is that the Government put CE schemes in an impossible situation when they made the funding cuts last December. This left them in an impossible situation for seven months.
“According to a trade union delegation who met with officials last Friday, the Minister has now decided to cut the training and materials funding by one third instead of two thirds. Realistically though a much greater investment is needed if the training offered to CE participants is to result in a higher rate of progression into paid employment. Currently the jobs to progress on to do not exist but when and if they do it is vital that those who have participated in CE are properly equipped and qualified to take them up.
“This partial roll-back is a small concession but I don’t believe that communities will be letting Minister Burton off the hook so easily.”