Employment Initiative July 2011


JobBridge Employment Initiative
A National Internship Scheme, known as JobBridge (www.jobbridge.ie) became effective on 1st July, whereby job-seekers who accept places for 6 or 9 months with participating employers will receive €50 per week in addition to their existing social welfare benefits.

The intern is paid directly by the State, so there is no administrative cost to the employer.

In order to qualify, the employer must currently employ at least one employee and the intern must not replace an existing employee.

National Jobs Register
Unfortunately, there remains little matching by the State of those who are seeking jobs with the scarce positions available. The Minister is aware of this problem and hopefully the replacement of Fás with a new State training agency will improve the situation. In our opinion, establishment of a national Jobs Register, which is accessible to registered employers, would be easy to implement
and should be done at the earliest opportunity.

We won’t hold our breath however, as we remind ourselves that the recommendations of the first Commission on Taxation, which reported between 1982 and 1985, were largely ignored. Among many other worthwhile recommendations, the Commission recommended that the social welfare and taxation systems should be integrated, in order to minimise the anomalies that we
are all so familiar with, most of which continue to this day. The disincentives to return to work, caused by high marginal tax rates, combined with generous social welfare payments and benefits, act as a disincentive to those in receipt of benefit to seek work. Now that the country is broke, perhaps this will change…or perhaps not….