Fianna Fáil General Election candidate for Wexford Cllr Malcolm Byrne says the Government should introduce targeted supports for those aged 50 and over who are unemployed.
Cllr Byrne pointed out that older people who become unemployed can find it difficult to find a new job due to a skills mismatch.
“Those aged 50 and over face specific challenges in trying to return to the workforce after a period of unemployment. It is often the case that they have a skills mismatch and do not meet the requirements for jobs that are being advertised. We need to examine a suite of measures that will help this demographic in getting back in to the workforce,” said Cllr Byrne.
“Employers need to be encouraged to recognise the value that those with experience can bring to the workforce. Policies that facilitate this must be actively pursued by Government. Incentives should be provided to employers who hire a new worker aged over 50 and who have been in receipt of social protection payments and without work for a defined period of time.
“For example they could be exempt from paying employers’ PRSI for the first twelve months of that employment. These sorts of measures will incentivise the employment of older workers and will prevent an entire generation from being without a job for the rest of their lives.
“We need a party in Government that is willing to address the issue of unemployment among older age cohorts and come up with fresh and innovative ideas such as those I have outlined. If I am elected, I will fight to ensure that older people who are unemployed are given adequate supports to facilitate their return to the work force,” said Cllr Byrne.