Crisis in employment is having a devastating effect on people’s lives - BREEN

January 13th, 2011 - Pat Breen

Fine Gael’s Spokesperson on Overseas Aid & Human Rights & Clare. T.D. Pat Breen warned today (Friday) that the Government’s focus this year must be on unemployment and emigration.

Deputy Breen was speaking following the publication of the latest local live register figures which show unemployment figures rose by 4% in County Clare for December 2010 compared to the previous month.

“10,619 people were registered as unemployed in County Clare at the end of December 2010, up 368 from November. All areas of the County witnessed an increase, however, the most profound increase was in Ennis up 153 since November. Ennistymon was up 71 and Kilrush up 70.”

“East Clare has been hit with a double whammy today, with unemployment up by 74 since last month and on top of that 50 workers and their families woke up this morning to hear the news that their jobs were lost at FINSA in Scarrif, a Company which has provided employment in the East Clare area since 1984.”

“Over the past two years, unemployment has increased by 41.61% in this County. This crisis in employment is having a devastating effect on people’s lives. Indeed, these figures would be even higher were it not for the huge number of young people who are emigrating from this County every day. Last week, 16 young people emigrated from the Kilmihil area and youth emigration is now a huge economic crisis.”

“These latest figures are particularly worrying given the fact that December is generally a month when consumer spending rises and jobs become available particularly in the Retail Sector. December’s bad weather had a huge effect on small businesses including shops and restaurants and the situation could be even bleaker at the end of January when many businesses may be forced to let staff go”

“Fine Gael warned the Government prior to last Decembers Budget that they would be making a mistake if their sole focus was on fixing the deficit and fixing the banks without any having any strategy to drive enterprise and jobs. At the centre of our alternative budget was a credible growth and jobs strategy which would tackle the scarcity of credit for small businesses; the need for strategic investment in broadband and energy and put in place immediate measures to help businesses survive by cutting PRSI, abolishing the travel tax and cutting VAT on labour intensive activities

“If the Government’s focus this year is not on employment and emigration, then I would be fearful that our live register figures will continue to grow and another generation of our youngest and brightest will continue to be lost to emigration.”

ENDS.

See Local Unemployment Analysis Underneath for your information.