As the Deputy will be aware, the primary goal of the Department’s activation services is to move people from long-term unemployment to full-time and sustained employment.
My Department refers long-term job seeking customers to the JobPath service to receive one-to-one intensive and regular engagement with a personal adviser who will assess their skills, experience, challenges and work goals and agree a “personal progression plan” that includes a schedule of activities, including relevant training and educational programmes to assist them in finding full-time sustainable employment. There are no barriers to any participants pursuing training, including further education and training courses, providing they are relevant to the agreed personal progression plan
All persons in receipt of Jobseeker's Allowance must be capable of, available for and actively seeking full time employment. The Social Welfare (Consolidation) Act 2005, as amended, specifies that participation in activation meetings is mandatory
In regard to the individual case raised by the Deputy, this person has already availed of the Department’s Back to Education Allowance scheme while completing a third level course. Any client engaged with the JobPath service who wishes to make a further application for support under this scheme is entitled to do so. If their application is approved and awarded, they then will be released from the JobPath service.
Until such time as an application for the Back to Education Allowance scheme is made the individual must engage and actively participate with the JobPath service.
I trust this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.