Deputy Gallagher hits out at high level of jobless households in Donegal

Nationwide 17.6% of households have no employment income

Staff Reporter


Staff Reporter

FIGURES: Dundalk women outperforming men in jobs recovery

Donegal TD and Leas Cheann Comhairle of the Dáil Deputy Pat the Cope Gallagher has said that Ireland’s rate of jobless households demonstrates that tens of thousands of families are not feeling the benefits of the economic recovery.

Nationwide 17.6% of households have no employment income and the household unemployment rate in Donegal is above the national average, he said.

“This is highly visible and evident in rural areas and the entire west of Ireland – the two-speed recovery continues with many areas struggling to see the benefits of the recovery,” he said.
“Jobless households are a clearer indicator of the recovery than the top line figures of employment creation as it provides a barometer of the strength and broad nature of the jobs recovery.”

The new information was obtained through parliamentary questions.

He said the latest data shows that of 1,440,600 relevant households in Ireland, some 253,000 have no adult in employment – no income from employment in the household.
“This represents 17.6% of the total number of households within the country without an income from employment. The relatively high rate of jobless households in Ireland is deeply concerning. The figures underscore that significant problems remain to be overcome when you look beyond the main headline employment figures.

“While the Government did launch the ‘Action Plan on Jobless Households’ last September, the pace at which they are tackling this issue remains far too slow. There is no real sense of urgency from the Government in wanting to meet this challenge head-on. The response has been far too sluggish to date and there is a failure to recognise the extent of the problem by some Government representatives who seem to be carried away with the headline figures rather than the broader underlying problems with rural employment.

“Fine Gael have been in Government for seven years now and despite their constant spin on employment, the fact of the matter is that 253,000 of relevant households are deemed to be without a job. This tells a different story to the one continuously trotted out and spun out by Fine Gael Ministers on the airwaves.
It is essential that the ‘Action Plan on Jobless Households’ delivers. The Government needs to prioritise this issue and deal with it accordingly. We can’t tolerate a situation where tens of thousands of households are effectively living on the margins of society. It’s clear that the Taoiseach’s ‘Republic of Opportunity’ is far from being realised when these statistics are considered in hard reality of 17.6% of household unemployment.”