Minister sets abysmal ‘target’ of 105,000 jobs by 2014 while 432,400 on current Live Register- Morgan
Speaking today after the release of the latest CSO Live Register figures for February, Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Enterprise, Trade and Employment Arthur Morgan has hit out at the Government and the Tánaiste.
Deputy Morgan said:
“Each month we anticipate that Government policy to curb unemployment will come to fruition; the policy that promised to put thousands of people back into employment, the policy that promised to educate, up skill and retrain people who were left structurally unemployed and those affected by multinational companies leaving our shores, the policy that cut social welfare in expectation that it would motivate people to get back into the labour market. But this policy was wrong.
“A 0.5% reduction in the seasonally adjusted Live Register is meaningless. If this is the fruition of Government policy it is further evidence of the failure of Government policy. We saw it yesterday in the Exchequer returns, we have also seen it in the announcement by the two banks recapitalised by billions of taxpayers money to increase interest charges for hard-pressed householders and today’s figures just reaffirm that the Government are willing to leave people languishing in long-term unemployment.
“The decrease of 790 young people under 25 on the Live Register is misleading. They cut social welfare payments to encourage young people to take up courses and jobs that don’t exist- jobs that they have failed to create. The exit strategy from the Live Register for these young people is emigration, not employment.
“The Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment’s strategy has thus far only stretched to setting a target to create 105,000 jobs by 2014 through the IDA. Today there are 432,400 people on the seasonally adjusted Live Register - 105,000 jobs is nowhere near adequate. The Government need to develop a strategy on indigenous enterprise as a matter of priority which will close this gap. Rather than allowing more and more people to sign on, the Government need to re-focus their efforts on a stimulus package to retain and create employment. Jobs targets are not the same as jobs.” ENDS