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Data confirms lower paid, younger workers disproportionately hit by job losses – Louise O’Reilly TD

30 October, 2020 - by Louise O'Reilly TD

Speaking this afternoon Sinn Féin spokesperson on Enterprise, Trade, Employment, and Workers’ Rights, Louise O’Reilly TD, has said new data from the European Commission showing the effect of the Covid crisis on the Irish labour market highlights the need for the government to continue to support workers through Wage Subsidy Schemes and the Pandemic Unemployment Payment.

Teachta O’Reilly said:

“The pandemic has ripped through our society and economy, but new data from the Eurostat, the European Commission’s statistical division, has outlined how workers in Ireland were the second most likely to lose their jobs in the EU.

“The data further outlined how it is lower paid and younger workers who have been most significantly affected.

“It is clear that both the health and economic implications of the pandemic have disproportionately affected ordinary working people.

“We have seen throughout the past number of months how the highest incidence rates of Covid19 arose in working class communities – where workers generally work on the frontline and in essential services, and where people often live in overcrowded accommodation in apartments, flats, or in close proximity in housing estates.

“The economic consequences are no different, they have also disproportionally affected these communities – new EU data has shown how low-income earners in Ireland were three times more likely to have lost their job than those on higher salaries.

“Young Irish workers were also significantly and disproportionately affected – these workers faced the third highest level of job losses during the second quarter after young workers in Spain and Portugal.

“The data from the European Commission has highlighted the true nature of the fragile, low wage, and low growth economy that Fine Gael have presided over for the past decade.

“As we move through the crisis the government have to build back better, and build a more robust, progressive economy – a high wage and high growth economy that works delivers for workers and society.

“The data from the European Commission further reinforces the need for the government to guarantee certainty by extending wage subsidy schemes and the PUP. It also supports Sinn Féin’s call for the PUP to be maintained for affected workers at the current rate.”

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