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Government failing to turn the tide on low pay and underemployment - Tóibín

4 February, 2015

Responding to today’s publication of the latest live register figures Sinn Féin TD Peadar Tóibín has today called on the Jobs Minister to address the high levels of underemployment and low pay. The Meath West TD also accused the Minister of a campaign of misinformation on government’s job creation figures. 

The Sinn Féin Jobs Spokesperson said:

“Whilst the rate of unemployment continues to decrease slowly and every job created is welcome, there is a widening gap between government hype and the reality on the ground across the state. 

“Government misinformation with regards to jobs created leads to incorrect analysis and faulty policy responses. Labour and Fine Gael tell us they’ve created 80,000 net new jobs since taking up office, but this figure simply doesn’t stand up to scrutiny. CSO figures clearly show the number of net new jobs created during this period is just 58,600. 

“Unemployment has declined across the eight regions but we know from CSO figures that the number of those employed in the West and South West has actually fallen by 13,600. Employment amongst the under 35’s has also fallen by 48,500 during this government’s term in office. 

“Current numbers in the labour force have fallen in the border, west and mid-west regions since Labour and Fine entered office with numbers in the Midlands, South-West and Mid-East remaining stagnant. Just Dublin and the South-East have experienced an increase, providing us with further evidence the State’s entrenched two-tier economy. 

“Ireland has the third highest rate of underemployment in the EU28, and we can see from today’s figures that the numbers in casual and part-time work remain stubbornly high at three times the number in the years prior to the recession. Over a third of workers will earn just €20,000 or less in 2015 yet the government has taken little action to tackle the prevalence of low pay across the state. Long term unemployment also remains doggedly high having fallen by just 1,783 since March 2011.” 

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