Tuesday, 14 February 2012
Department of Education and Skills
European Globalisation Fund
Question 216: To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if he will confirm whether an application has been made to the European Globalisation Fund for workers made redundant in TalkTalk in 2011; if so, when the application was made; the number of workers named in the application; the total funding being sought from the EGF for this application; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7838/12]
Officials in the Department are currently finalising an application for EGF co-financing of certain measures in support of almost 600 redundant workers at the TalkTalk company in Waterford and a number of ancillary enterprises.
The application has involved considerable consultation to date with representatives of the redundant TalkTalk workers and the relevant service providers at local, regional and national levels and including a grouping chaired by the Waterford City manager. Both I and my officials have met with the relevant parties on a number of occasions since the redundancies were announced with the aim of ensuring the most sustainable and appropriate EGF application is submitted to the European Commission.
As the final details are being put to the application currently I am not in a position to state the total amount of funding being sought at this time. Subject to final inputs it is intended to submit the application by the end of February 2012. Already certain support measures have been provided by local service providers and by Skillnets networks to the redundant workers since the redundancy announcement was made. Recently the Department approved the running of a tailored certificate in career development and skills enhancement for this cohort at the Waterford Institute of Technology in order to provide early interventions and advice to the workers even in advance of the EGF application being submitted.