SDLP Youth launch youth employment campaign

Newry Times News Posted by
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Friday, September 7th, 2012
Politics

Newry and Armagh SDLP Youth recently launched their Jobs, Unemployment and Young People Survey on the streets of Newry.

Dominic Bradley MLA with some members of SDLP Youth in Newry

The ‘Jobs for Our Generation’ campaign is being rolled out across Ireland over the course of September in advance of the SDLP Youth’s Jobs Strategy for a New Generation.

Local Chairman Brian Watters explained, “Young people today feel like they have no prospects of a good job at the end of education or training. Many spend years at College or University and mount up thousands in debt and have little prospect of a decent job when they graduate.

“Like many generations of young Irish men and women before them the only prospect that faces them is immigration. It is a sad state of affairs when mothers and fathers, many who left these shores to work abroad now wave goodbye to their sons and daughters knowing that the only prospect of a decent job on a decent wage is thousands of mile away.”

He continued, “Our young people invest years in their education, they want to be the employers of the future and yet the only thing we seem to be exporting at the minute is our young people and their talents.

“I and people of my generation see friends leaving for Canada, Australia, the USA or the UK; just look at your local GAA team and you see the impact of immigration; across this island GAA clubs are finding it hard to get enough players on the field.”

Watters added, “Unemployment is at its highest level in the past 20 years but now we have a devolved government which young people see as a waste of time and money, they are more interested in point scoring than creating jobs.

“Enough is enough, this has to stop; we need to see the executive refocus its efforts on job creation and investment.”

The SDLP Youth Group was joined on the streets by Newry and Armagh Assembly Member Dominic Bradley MLA.

Praising the efforts of the group, Mr Bradley said, “Our offices in Newry and Armagh are inundated with young people in desperation, they have no jobs and no prospects of jobs, they are either in looking help with benefit applications or visa and passport applications.”

“Our young people want work and want government to work for them and help create those jobs and this is the message I will be bringing to the Assembly in this new term.”


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2 Comments for “SDLP Youth launch youth employment campaign”

  1. Stephen Murney

    The Stormont administration voted on July 2nd, just before the start of its summer recess, to introduce the British Tories’ workfare programme through the work experience scheme. The scheme will initially focus on 18-24 year olds in the Six Counties, 26,000 of whom have never had a job since leaving school or college, but will be expanded to include all working-age people. It will require jobseekers to work up to twelve weeks in order to obtain their dole, which at its most amounts to £56.25 per week for under-25s. The scheme also includes the power to sanction jobseekers, including stripping them totally of their jobseeker’s allowance. one need only look at the ‘achievements’ of the Steps to Work programme to see Stormont’s powerlessness to deal with youth unemployment. The Steps to Work programme was introduced by Stormont in 2008. It is a mandatory scheme, in which young people under 25 are sent to work in a placement for up to a year. In exchange for this they receive their dole payment plus an extra £15.38, giving them a maximum weekly wage of £71.63. That programme was also brought in with the stated purpose of helping young people find work, but of the 85,000 youths who have taken part in the scheme since its inception, only 19,743 (just under a quarter) found work. No wonder our young people are seeking employment in other parts of the world when the SDLP and the rest of the establishment parties in Stormont are involved in the above

    • Feargal Murphy

      Mr Murney,

      I want to draw attention to some of the points you raised.

      Firstly you talk about the mandatory activity scheme. If you had done your research instead of copying from the Eirigi website you’d understand that the SDLP voted AGAINST this work scheme.

      We share your concerns, maybe its time you join the SDLP as you seem so confident in our policies :)

      PS: Here is where Mr Murney got his argument from, sheep!
      http://www.eirigi.org/latest/latest070812print.html

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