Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Jobs Willie O’Dea has described today’s Live Register figures as “extremely disappointing and very worrying.”
Deputy O’Dea said: “The number of people signing on the live register has increased by 2,700 to 447,100. There was a particular spike in the number of women joining the register last month, an increase of 6.6% while the increase in the number of men signing on increased by 2.9%.
“It is clear now that the Government’s jobs initiative is not working. VAT was down again in October this time by €83 million while income tax is now €125 million below target according to the exchequer figures released yesterday. There is a very troubling picture emerging where the Government has raided the private pension funds to the tune €460 million to pay for a job plan that’s having no impact.
“What is also very troubling is the number of long term claimants on the Live Register and youth unemployment.
The figures show that 41.9% of claimants in September were on the Live Register for one year or more. In September 2010 long term claimants made up 33.4% of the total Live Register. The number of long term claimants last month was recorded at 179,773 (41.8%). This represents an increase of 32,165 (+21.8%) since this time last year. Meanwhile despite a slight decrease the number of people under 25 signing on is still high at 77,709.
Deputy O’Dea said: “Long-term unemployment and youth unemployment are extremely serious. My concern is that this Government has spent most of the time spinning that it is devoted to job creation, but is taking little steps to achieve it. The jobs initiative and the establishment of the NewERA Agency are more about generating headlines than getting people back to work. Most of the money from the pension levy wasn’t used to generate jobs and is instead now masking difficulties in the exchequer figures.”