25 January 2013

2,000 extra CE places will help jobseekers locally

Local TD and Minister for Children and Youth Affairs, Frances Fitzgerald, has said that an additional 2,000 Community Employment places are being made available to help those out of work to get a job. Minister Fitzgerald added that the Government will spend €1 billion this year on retraining and up- skilling programmes aimed at getting people back to work.

“These extra places on the Community Employment (CE) programme will be specifically targeted at helping the long term unemployed get back into the workplace. More than 12,000 new jobs were created in the private sector last year, but one of the biggest challenges we face is ensuring those on the live register are able to take up the new jobs being created,” said Fitzgerald.

The extra places mean a total of 25,300 places are being made available on CE schemes this year. Over the next 12 months, the Government will spend €1 billion on activation programmes and other supports aimed at helping people get back to work. For example, in the Budget, €11 million was allocated to provide the extra CE places and 8,000 additional other training places this year across a range of schemes.

“The scale of the challenge facing us remains huge. 150,000 jobs were lost in the construction sector alone in the final three years of Fianna Fáil’s time in Government. We have seen that legacy across Clondalkin and Lucan with unemployment still at high levels. It is important that those looking for work can get the skills they need to take up the jobs that are being created.

“CE schemes play a very important role in local communities and we see that every day across various projects and centres in our area. These schemes help job seekers to develop their skills, experience and confidence. We need to give particular help to those who have been unemployed for a long time, and who are finding it very difficult to get back into the workforce.

“Retraining and up skilling is an essential part of our plan to ensure our workforce has the right skills to take advantage of the growth being experienced in key sectors like tourism, agri-food and ICT. In this way, we will reduce numbers of the live register and help jobseekers enter full time employment,” concluded Fitzgerald.