Wednesday, 18 October 2017
Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection
Social Welfare Benefits Data
202. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the number of young persons under 26 years of age who are in receipt of jobseeker's allowance, jobseeker's benefit and signing for credits for 12 months or more; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [44157/17]
The following table provides the number of persons under 26 years of age in receipt of jobseeker’s allowance, jobseeker’s benefit and credits with a duration greater than 1 year at end of September 2017.
|Age||Jobseeker's Allowance||Jobseeker's Benefit||Credits Only|
Lower weekly rates for younger jobseeker’s allowance recipients were first introduced in 2009 and extended in subsequent Budgets. These measures were introduced to protect young people from welfare dependency by providing them with a strong financial incentive to engage in education or training or to take up employment. Should a young jobseeker on a reduced jobseeker’s allowance payment participate on an education or training programme they will receive a higher weekly payment of €193 which is the maximum personal rate for jobseeker’s allowance and this payment will be increased to €198 in March 2018.
I am committed to ensuring my Department continues to identify effective measures to incentivise and support young people in finding and securing sustainable jobs. The best way to do this is through engagement processes and by incentivising them to avail of educational and training opportunities, thereby enhancing their employment prospects.
As part of Budget 2018 I announced the introduction of the youth employment support scheme (YESS) which is targeted at young jobseekers who are long-term unemployed or who face barriers to employment. This new work experience programme aims to provide them with the opportunity to learn basic work and social skills in a supportive environment while on a work placement. Participation in the scheme will be completely voluntary, and participants will receive the equivalent of a net minimum wage payment. The details of the new scheme are still being finalised, but I expect to launch it in quarter two of next year.
203. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the number of young persons aged 18 to 25 years of age who have applied for a jobseeker's benefit or jobseeker's allowance and were unsuccessful and-or were ineligible for a payment in each of the years 2013 to 2016; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [44158/17]