Minister for Social Protection, Heather Humphreys TD
Minister for Social Protection, Heather Humphreys TD, and Minister of State, Joe O’Brien TD, have today announced over 2,600 additional places on Community Employment (CE) and Tús schemes nationwide, including 25 places in Co Longford.
The approval for an additional 1,475 places on CE schemes and 1,164 places on Tús schemes reflects a key commitment in Pathways to Work – the Government’s ambitious new employment services strategy.
In terms of Community Employment, the additional 1,475 places will be allocated to schemes in every county.
Meanwhile, the additional 1,164 places on Tús schemes will be allocated to the 19 counties that applied.
Making the announcement today, Minister Humphreys said:
“‘Pathways to Work’ is all about giving people the tools and opportunities they need to secure employment. Our Community Employment and Tús schemes are central to that strategy – providing a vast range of work experience, skills development and mentoring for people who are long-term unemployed.
“At present, there are over 19,000 people participating in CE schemes and over 4,000 on Tús schemes. In 2020, the Department of Social Protection invested €425 million in these schemes – demonstrating their importance to communities right across the country.
“So many of our towns and villages have been negatively impacted by Covid-19.
“But as we emerge from this Pandemic, we are determined to support our citizens who find themselves out of work in every way possible.
“Along with Minister O’Brien, I am really pleased to provide these additional 2,639 places, which I know will be of huge benefit to so many people and their communities.
Minister O’Brien said:
“From the onset of the Covid-19 emergency in March 2020 and the subsequent restrictions, the Department of Social Protection continued to support CE and Tús schemes while also introducing other contingency measures, to safeguard existing placements and services provided by CE and Tús schemes, including the extension of CE participant contracts.
“This Government is committed to supporting the CE sponsoring authorities in the valuable services that they deliver across communities through these particularly challenging times and today’s announcement of the additional placements is a further testament to that.
“My Department will now work closely with these schemes to ensure that these new placements, which provide opportunities for the long-term unemployed, are filled as soon as possible and that CE and Tús schemes use this expanded capacity to the benefit of communities to which they provide vital local services.”
Community Employment and Tús schemes are employment support measures for long-term unemployed people and other people in receipt of long-term payments from the Department of Social Protection.
The schemes employ participants to deliver a range of services to local communities throughout the country.
These include local amenities management, environmental projects, arts and culture, sports, childcare, Tidy Towns, health-related services, meals on wheels and drug rehabilitation schemes.
As well as contributing to the delivery of local services, the participants develop a range of occupational skills and work experience that help to improve their own prospects of securing full-time employment.
The allocation of the additional places stems from a key commitment in Pathways to Work for the provision of 3,000 additional places on the CE and Tús employment support schemes for people who are unemployed for twelve months or more, including time spent on the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP).
This is the first step in allocating these additional places.
In early summer, the Department invited CE sponsoring authorities and Tús implementing bodies to submit expressions of interest that would provide employment support opportunities for such placements.
Following the initial ‘expression of interest’ process, the Department invited applications for the additional placements which, in partnership with Pobal, were assessed with those meeting key criteria approved for additional places.
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.