Minister Burton welcomes OECD Economic Survey of Ireland 2013


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The Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton TD, has today (September 12th, 2013) welcomed the OECD Economic Survey of Ireland 2013, the recommendations of which are in line with steps already being taken by the Government.  

The report correctly notes that prior to the economic crisis, labour market activation policies were weak in Ireland.

Since taking office, Minister Burton has focussed on moving the Department from a passive benefits provider to one that is actively engaging with people to help them back to work, training and education.
The Minister and the Department have prioritised the necessary reforms, they are being implemented at pace, and are already having a significant impact.

There was an annual increase in employment of 33,800 (1.8%) in the year to the second quarter of 2013, as measured by the CSO.

Unemployment decreased by 22,200 (6.9%) year on year, bringing the total number of persons unemployed to 300,700. This is the fourth quarter in succession where unemployment has declined on an annual basis.
In addition, the long-term unemployment rate decreased from 9.2% to 8.1% over the year.

Earlier this year, the Minister with the Taoiseach and Tánaiste launched Pathways to Work 2013, the Government’s 50-point action plan to fight long-term unemployment.

The 50 actions in Pathways to Work 2013 are designed to deliver:

  • A greater number of places on employment and training schemes for people who are long-term unemployed.
  • A set of more attractive recruitment incentives for employers, such as JobsPlus, the new scheme which offers employers fixed cash grants to hire persons who have been long-term unemployed.
  • Accelerated roll-out of the full Intreo work activation service nationwide, which offers jobseekers their income and employment supports in “one-stop shops”.
  • Much greater engagement by the private, community, voluntary and not-for-profit sectors in the delivery of employment services.
  • A more effective interplay between welfare payments, tax and in-work payments to reduce welfare traps and make work pay.
  • A staged roll-out of a Youth Guarantee so that young unemployed people will, when the guarantee is fully rolled out, receive a good-quality offer of employment, continued education, an apprenticeship or a traineeship within a period of four months of becoming unemployed or leaving formal education.

ENDS

12 September 2013

Last modified:12/09/2013
 

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