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JobBridge discriminating against Single Parents and people with a disability – Ó Clochartaigh

17 November, 2011


The JobBridge National Internship programme is guilty of unjustly excluding single parents and those with disabilities who are interested in taking on an internship, according to Sinn Féin Senator Trevor Ó Clochartaigh.

The Senator challenged the Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton, in the Seanad today to stop discriminating against these marginalised groups and to rectify the situation immediately.

The Galway West Senator has been in contact with the Department of Social Protection, and was informed that to participate in the JobBridge scheme, applicants had to be in receipt of Jobseekers Allowance or Benefit, and that no other Social Welfare recipients are eligible.

Senator Ó Clochartaigh said:

“This is entirely unjust, and beggars belief in the context that the Government makes so much of trying to get people back to work. It feeds the assumption that those on the Single Parent’s Allowance and those on Disability Payments are not interested in getting experience and increasing their job prospects.

“I am aware that there are many single parents and people with disabilities out there, who are more than willing to participate in the JobBridge scheme.

“However to do so, would mean that they have to give up their Single Parents or Disability Allowance to take up Jobseekers payments, which would disadvantage them in terms of rent allowance and other secondary benefits. It would be unfair to ask this disadvantaged section of society to do that.

“We have seen in recent weeks and months that the JobBridge programme is wide open to abuse and is being exploited by many employers simply to access free labour, as we predicted. Many people are missing out on the opportunity to gain meaningful work experience on account of unscrupulous employers and gaps in the scheme which deem them ineligible. Indeed the scheme appears to have more holes than a teabag.

“The whole JobBridge scheme needs re-evaluation; it was flawed from the very beginning. It is merely a cosmetic exercise to massage the desperate unemployment figures, and to take people off the live register. While there is clearly value in giving people employment experience, this scheme has failed in many respects.

“In the meantime however, the minister needs to immediately change the qualification stipulations in order to allow Single parents and people with a disability to participate fully.” ENDS

JobBridge ag déanamh leatrom ar thuistí aonair agus daoine le míchumas – Ó Clochartaigh

Tá an scéim intéarnacht náisiúnta JobBridge claonta go míchothrom i gcoinne tuismitheoirí aonair agus daoine le míchumas a bhfuil suim acu intéarnacht a ghlacadh, dar leis an Seanadóir as Sinn Féin, Trevor Ó Clochartaigh.

Thug an Seanadóir dúshlán an Aire Coimirce Sóisialaí, Joan Burton, inniu sa Seanad agus dúirt léi eirí as a bheith ag déanamh leatrom ar na grúpaí mionlaigh seo agus an scéal a chuir ina cheart láithreach.

Tá teagmháil déanta ag Seanadóir Gaillimh Thiar leis an Roinn Coimirce Sóisialaí agus cuireadh in iúl dó go gur daoine a fhaigheann liúntas nó sochar dífhostaíochta amháin atá i dteideal iarratas a dhéanamh ar an scéim agus nach bhfuil daoine a fhaigheann íocaíochtaí leasa shóisialaí d’aon chineál eile incháilithe.

Dúirt Seanadóir Ó Clochartaigh:

“Tá sé seo iomlán éagóireach, agus ní dhéanann sé aon chiall nuair atá an Rialtas ag déanamh an oiread sin cainte faoi daoine a mhealladh ar ais i dtreo na fostaíochta. Cuireann sé leis an meon nach bhfuil suim ag daoine ar Íocaíochtaí Tuismitheoir Aonair nó Míchumais i mbreis taithi oibre a fháil, nó a gcuid deiseanna fostaíochta a fheabhsú’.

“Tá fhios agam cuid mhaith tuismitheoirí aonair agus daoine le míchumas amuigh ansin go mba bhreá leo páirt a ghlacadh i scéim cosúil le JobBridge’, a deir an Seanadóir.

“Ach le sin a dhéanamh bheadh orthu a gcuid liúntais Tuismitheoirí Aonair nó Míchumais a thabhairt suas chun liúntais Cuardaitheoir Poist a ghlacadh, rud a d’fhágfadh níos measa as iad ó thaobh liúntas cíosa agus liúntais tánaisteacha eile. Bheadh sé míchothrom iarraidh ar an dream seo atá faoi míbhuntáiste cheana féin, sin a dhéanamh’, dar le Ó Clochartaigh.

“Tá sé feicthe againn le tamaill anuas go bhfuil go leor spás ann an scéim a mhíúsáid, agus tá sé seo ar siúl ag fostóirí mí-ionraic chun obair a fháil déanta in aisce. Tá go leor daoine ag cailleadh amach ar an deis chun taithí oibre fiúntach a fháil de bharr go bhfuil roinnt fostóirí mí-ionraic ag baint aimhleas as agus de bharr fabhtanna atá sa leagan amach chomh maith. Tá nios mó poill sa leagan amach ná a bheadh i mála tae’, dar leis an gClochartach.

“Ba cheart athbhreithniú iomlán a dhéanamh ar an scéim JobBridge; bhí sé lochtach ón tús. Níl ann ach craiceann síoda ar ghabhar, chun cuma níos fearr a chuir ar na figiúirí uafásacha dífhostaíochta agus chun uimhir na ndaoine atá ar an gclár beo a ísliú. Cé go bhfuil fiúntas le taithí oibre a thabhairt do dhaoine, tá teipthe ar an scéim seo ar chuid mhaith cúiseanna.

“Idir an dá linn áfach, caithfidh an tAire na critéir cáilíochta a athrú láithreach le cead a thabhairt do Thuismitheorí Aonair agus daoine le Míchumas páirt iomlán a ghlacadh ann.” Críoch

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