Written answers

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Department of Social Protection

Departmental Schemes

10:00 pm

Photo of Willie O'DeaWillie O'Dea (Limerick City, Fianna Fail)
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Question 267: To ask the Minister for Social Protection the reason traders and businesses who do not employ at least one person are excluded from the JobBridge scheme. [20987/11]

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)
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The National Internship Scheme has been set up with a view to giving job seekers the opportunity to take part in a quality internship with a host organisation.

A host organisation participating in JobBridge must be in a position to provide a substantial commitment to their intern and to ensure that they are provided with a quality internship. It is considered that many sole traders and persons who do not employ at least one person will have insufficient capacity to mentor and support properly the professional development of an intern over the course of the internship. It has therefore been decided that, initially, sole traders and persons who do not employ at least one person will not be eligible to participate in the national internship scheme.

The Department is monitoring the operation of JobBridge on an ongoing basis, including eligibility criteria, and will amend them if considered necessary. In that context, the Department is currently reviewing the eligibility of sole traders.

Photo of Joanna TuffyJoanna Tuffy (Dublin Mid West, Labour)
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Question 268: To ask the Minister for Social Protection if a person who is unemployed but is not in receipt of any payments or benefit from social welfare will be able to participate in the national internship scheme; if so, the circumstances in which they may participate; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [21010/11]

Photo of Joan BurtonJoan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)
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In order to be eligible to participate in JobBridge, the national internship scheme, an individual must: - currently be in receipt of a Jobseeker's Allowance/Jobseeker's Benefit or signing for credits on the Live Register, and - have been so for a total of three months or more in the last six months.

An individual who does not receive a Jobseeker's Allowance/Benefit payment may therefore be eligible to participate in the scheme provided that they are currently signing onto the Live Register for Social Insurance contribution credits and have been doing so for at least three of the last six months. Information on the scheme, including details of eligibility criteria for the scheme, is available at www.jobsbridge.ie.

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