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Low paid insecure work is bad for business - Tóibín

1 April, 2015

Following publication of the CSOs live register figures for March 2015, Sinn Féin TD Peadar Tóibín has called on the Jobs Minister to take urgent action on low paid, insecure work.

The Sinn Féin Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Spokesperson said:

“Today’s live register shows yet again that casual insecure work in now entrenched in Ireland’s labour force, yet Labour and Fine Gael exhibit no urgency in tackling what is a real problem for the economy.”

“Over the last four years casual and part time workers have accounted for 20% of those signing on. This is an unprecedented percentage not replicated since this data has been collected for these workers from 2002.”

“Today’s reality that one in five people signing on are in casual part time work is not simply a phenomenon arising from the recession, it is further evidence that low paid insecure work is now, under Labour and Fine Gael’s watch, entrenched in Ireland’s labour force.”

“Widespread low paid work and the prevalence of low and zero hour contracts will undermine Ireland’s recovery; add an additional expenditure burden on the state and impact negatively on tax revenue.” 

“Despite increasing industrial unrest on these issues Labour's Employment and Business Ged Nash confirmed with me this week that it will be at least six months before the report he has commissioned into zero hour contracts will be complete.” 

“The truth is Ged Nash could have had the data he needs today if the Central Statistics Office were tasked with collecting data on zero hour contracts as part of their Quarterly National Household Survey work as is now done by the Office for Central Statistics in Britain.”

“It’s clear Labour's election manifesto is of more import to the Labour Minister than fundamental workers’ rights and the scandalous terms enforced on them by employers who refuse to engage in Ireland’s workplace relations structures. We just have to look to tomorrows strike action by Dunnes workers whose employer refuses to engage with their employees and their trade union representatives.” 

“Despite the slight drop in the live register figures there remain 348,676 people signing on. It is important to note that the 65's and over in receipt of a jobseekers payment or credit are not included in the live register figures, nor are the majority of those attending job activation schemes.”  

“When we factor in the job-seeking 65's and over and activation schemes those seeking work increases to one in five people in the labour force.” 

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