Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Questions (309)

Mattie McGrath

Question:

309. Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Social Protection the avenue available to a person who is unemployed or disabled who wishes to pursue a community employment or FÁS training course and so on but who is not in receipt of a payment due to the income of their spouse and where such a course would be beneficial to their rehabilitation and well-being; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [12486/13]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The aim of Community Employment (CE) remains as an active labour market programme with the emphasis on progression into employment and/or further education and training. The core eligibility criterion for CE is that the person is in receipt of a qualifying social welfare payment and is either long term unemployed or socially marginalised.

At present, persons signing for credits or who are otherwise ineligible for a social welfare payment, do not meet the current eligibility requirements for participation on the CE Scheme. They may, however, be eligible for participation on other Departmental programmes or FÁS programmes, although they may not qualify for payment of an allowance.

Such persons are advised to contact their local DSP Employment Services Office where an Employment Services Officer will discuss the employment and training options that are open to them.

Within the current budgetary constraints, the number of places has increased by an additional 2,000 places to 25,300 for 2013. In delivering these places, the Department will continue to manage this allocation in order to maximise progression to the labour market, while at the same time facilitating the support of community services.