Boost: Fine Gael TD for Co Limerick, Tom Nevillehief Supt Gerard Roche
UNEMPLOYMENT in Limerick is now lower than before the financial crash, according to Fine Gael TD Tom Neville and the level of unemployment is continuing to decline in line with the national trend.
The number of people on the live register in June 2009 was 10,710, he revealed this week but by February 2012 this had almost doubled to 20,327.
The figure for unemployment now stands at 7,988.
“In Co Limerick the number of people on the Live Register has declined 61% since Fine Gael launched its Action Plan for Jobs in 2012,” said Deputy Neville who is vice chairperson of the Joint Oireachtas Committee on Business and Enterprise.
Nationally, he pointed out, the CSO has reported that the unemployment rate has now fallen to 5.3%. “It is almost 11 years since the unemployment rate was so low.”
But he continued, the government and Minster for Employment Affairs and Social Protection, Regina Doherty are continuing to highlight a number of initiatives to support and help people to enter, or return to, the workforce.
“The Youth Employment Support Scheme for example was launched in September and is targeted exclusively at young jobseekers, aged 18 to 24, who are either long-term unemployed or face significant barriers to employment,” he explained.
“JobsPlus, which was introduced in July 2013, provides a direct monthly financial incentive to employers who offer full-time employment opportunities to long-term unemployed people,” Deputy Neville added. “The scheme was further enhanced from 1 January 2018 to support workers aged 50 or over. Almost 16,000 have been employed through the scheme in 2017 and so far in 2018 .
“In addition the Department continues to provide valuable work experience for those who are long-term unemployed through the community employment and TUS schemes.
“These schemes also provide important local services in towns and villages throughout the country. At present there are approximately 28,000 participants on these schemes who are benefiting from work experience and training.”
“Only a strong economy supporting people at work can provide the public services needed to deliver the kind of society we all want to live in,” Deputy Neville continued. “We are at a crucial point in the economic cycle and the choices that we make now will set the tone for the coming years.”
However, he concluded: “The recent CSO figures are really positive for communities across Co Limerick as every job created has a positive knock on effect for local businesses and services.”