Sinn Féin TD for Wicklow/East Carlow
Friday, 24 February 2012
Pathways to Work is putting people on the path to poverty
Responding to the publication of Fine Gael and Labour's ‘Pathways to Work’ Wicklow Sinn Féin county councillor John Brady said “Pathways to Poverty” or "Pathways to Emigration" would be more apt titles because the government is not creating jobs for the unemployed to move into, unemployment nationally is 14.2%, here in Wicklow there are 12,541 out of work and it is continuing to grow .
He said “There are hundreds of thousands of people desperate to get off our dole queues and find work. This document offers them very little hope and instead threatens to cut their meagre incomes. Much of the governments announcement is a rehash of provisions put in place by the previous government and objected to at the time by the Labour Party.
“And, without any new training places, new investment in education or new jobs, the plan is no better than waffle. It is aimed at building up the hopes of those languishing on dole queues only to dash them when they can’t deliver. The only option now for Wicklow people is to join the 40,000 people emigrating every year, nearly 3,000 a month are packing their bags and heading abroad in the hope of finding work. This main objective of this plan is to see dole payments cut sooner in the hope people will emigrate quicker"
“There are a couple of very big elephants in the room today. No.1 there is no work - the European Commission's Vacancy Monitor shows that there are currently 50 jobseekers for every single vacancy in this state, No. 2 there are no additional resources being allocated for the activation supports, profiling etc. and No. 3 the Minister is cutting a further €1 billion from her Department’s Budget by the end of 2014 over and above those cuts announced in the Budget just passed.
Cllr Brady concluded “Just like the Budget the emphasis of the governments announcement is on punishing the unemployed. Rather than ‘Pathways to Work’ I think ‘Pathways to Poverty’ or "Pathways to emigration" would be more apt titles.”