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Government solely focussed on banks while unemployment continues to soar – Morgan

31 March, 2010

Speaking today after the release of the Live Register figures for March revealed an increase in the number of people signing on, Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Enterprise, Trade and Employment Arthur Morgan has criticised the Government's expenditure on the bank recapitalisation given that there has been no job creation plan forthcoming.

Deputy Morgan said:

“Why is this government spending all of its energy on the banking crisis while so little effort is being put into getting the rest of the economy back on track? Why is so little being done to tackle unemployment?

“The casualties of this Government are the 433,000 people that are on the Live Register today. When it comes to job creation and stemming the rise of unemployment, this Government is redundant.

“What would €21.8 billion get you? Should these 433,000 people on the Live Register today not get a choice of what the €21.8 billion should be spent on? If the Government were listening to the people they would soon realise that what this country needs is jobs, not colossal generational debt for decades to come.

“This money is being thrown into the banking black hole when it could be put to a much more productive use. It could finance a youth jobs fund to create more than 20,000 jobs, the reversal in the pay cut for public sector workers on low and average incomes, the reversal to cuts to social welfare, 10,000 new Community Employment places, conversion courses and most importantly a future in their own country for the thousands of people who are forced to emigrate.

“While a whole generation of young, education and skilled people are leaving our shores, the Government are only intent on securing the futures of their friends in the banks. The Ireland they are creating is not an equal or fair one. The Ireland they are creating is one habitable only for developers, bankers and their political cronies. While unemployment is a ball and chain around the ankles of ordinary people, where there exists no stimulus package or a job creation plan, a recapitalisation plan of up to €32 billion is being made available to banks.

“If the Government spent half as much time and energy on stopping the haemorrhaging of employment and on the introduction of a job creation package as they do on helping the banks, developers and speculators, then Ireland would not have the second highest level of unemployment in the EU.” ENDS

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