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New research debunks myth that social welfare rates discourage employment

21 September, 2011 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Speaking at the Oireachtas Committee on Jobs, Social Protection and Education this morning Sinn Féin Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh welcomed research from the Department of Social Protection dispelling the myth that social welfare acts as a disincentive to work once and for all.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:

“This research demonstrates that for the overwhelming majority of people on the live register social welfare payments are significantly lower than their income would be from even minimum wage employment.

“Certain politicians, employers and commentators have been spreading the myth that people are happy to stay on the dole because social welfare payments are too high. It’s time for those who have been banging this drum to admit that the real barrier to employment is the absence of job opportunities.

“I heard the employer who claimed he could not fill a 28,000 per annum post because welfare rates are too high. But the figures contained in this research demonstrate that the employer’s original tale was absolutely baseless.

“In fact in the case mentioned the income from employment would be four to five thousand euros greater than income on the dole. These myths are being promoted by unscrupulous profiteers who wish to drive down social welfare payments in order to facilitate wage cuts.” ENDS

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