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New thinking needed to tackle poverty and unemployment in urban and suburban areas

19 May, 2005


Sinn Féin Community Affairs spokesperson, Seán Crowe TD has welcomed the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaelteacht Affairs, Éamon Ó Cuív's call for new thinking on job creation and economic development in rural Ireland and has called for similar new thinking to tackle poverty and unemployment in urban and suburban areas. The Sinn Féin Deputy raised the issue with the Minister in the Dáil today.

Speaking afterwards he said, "I welcome the Minister‚s call for new thinking on job creation and economic development in rural Ireland. But I wouldn't stop at rural Ireland. There is a need for similar new thinking to tackle poverty and unemployment in urban and suburban areas, especially in view of the ongoing job losses and the findings of several surveys by the one parent exchange network this month.

"In common with many parts of rural Ireland working class communities in city and suburban areas are facing huge challenges in dealing with the transition from old economy activities to new ones.

"In recent months there have been job losses at Gallaghers, APW, Loctite and Sujitsu in my constituency, these closures are just part of an ongoing process of jobs haemorrhaging where small local based manufacturing and electronics companies are becoming part of history rather than a secure employment future.

"I would call on the Minister to, in conjunction with the Finance and Social Affairs Minister, use their combined offices to lobby and if necessary coerce the banking sector to accept their responsibilities to provide community banking services to protect Irish communities from extortionate money lenders.

"Like rural Ireland we need to act to protect the city and surrounding communities who are dealing with massive economic transition. There is clearly a need for new thinking and a new approach. This means new training and education programmes, it means community based and lead initiatives on job creation, and direct action to combat poverty and finance deficits. The Minister needs to tell us clearly what he is going to do to lead this new thinking across the state." ENDS

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