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Government not doing enough to tackle rising unemployment

1 June, 2011

Speaking in response to the release of the CSO Live Register figures for May 2011 Sinn Fein spokesperson on Jobs Peadar Tóibín said that ‘the Government is not doing enough to tackle rising unemployment.’ The CSO figures show that 2,900 people were added to the Live Register in May bringing the total unemployment level to 14.8%, its highest point this year.

Deputy Tóibín said:

“Unemployment has risen again. In May 2,900 more people signed on the Live Register. 14.8% of the labour force, a staggering 443,400 people are now out of work. And of course this figure does not include those who were self employed and those who have emigrated.

“The Government’s anaemic jobs initiative launched last month will do little to address the growing problem of unemployment and long-term unemployment. It will only create a small number of short term part time jobs.

“This is simply not good enough when set against the pre-election promises of both Government parties. Fine Gael promised an investment of €7 billion to create 100,000 jobs. Labour promised a jobs fund of €500 million and a Strategic Investment Bank with funds of €2 billion.

“Yet only weeks after taking office they announced a jobs initiative that promised a meagre €29 million of expenditure on capital projects and €11 million on additional training places.

“There is an urgent need for serious investment in job creation. The government has access to monies in the National Pension Reserve Fund. The only way to get the economy back on track is to invest in a major job creation stimulus package using a portion of this fund.

“Sinn Fein believes that the government must invest €2 billion from the National Pension Reserve fund to fast track labour intensive infrastructure projects and to assist small and medium sized businesses to save and create jobs.” ENDS

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