Tipperary TD Jackie Cahill has said the Government need to revisit the operation of a variety of Social Protection schemes, such as the Community Employment, Tús and Rural Social Scheme, to ensure that participation is maximised, and that as many local community organisations can benefit.
Deputy Cahill has further called on the Minister for Social Protection to extend the timeframe for participation in the CE, Tús and Rural Social Schemes.
“Up and down the county, those working on the CE, Tús and RSS schemes make an enormous contribution to the communities they are based in.
Without these schemes, many services that the public rely on, such as a the maintenance of community facilities, football pitches, green spaces as well as meals on wheels and other social services, would not be available.
“We need to accept that it is unlikely that a large proportion of those presently on the schemes will re-enter the mainstream workforce.
At present there are quite limiting rules in terms of how long a person can spend on the scheme.
“The Minister should consider extending the timeframe for participation to allow continued participation and ensure that those community organisations benefitting can continue to do so.
“Forcing them back on to Jobseeker’s Allowance is counter-productive. It can have a negative impact on the people themselves and it deprives communities of experienced workers who could be making a valuable contribution to their communities.