Tuesday, 21 June 2022
Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection
Social Welfare Schemes
595. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection the reason Turas Nua is putting the onus on a social welfare recipient to share the status of their employment, when this information already exists within the Department of Social Protection; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [32207/22]
The person is not under any obligation to provide employment or employer details to the JobPath provider but, if they wish to do so and avail of the in-employment support offered, all information will be treated confidentially. It is not necessarily the case that the Department holds employment history of all individuals who are referred to the JobPath service.
JobPath providers work with the referred person to identify and overcome barriers to employment, this may include a review of past work history. In addition, the JobPath providers are required to offer in-work support to the person for up to twelve months while they remain in employment. This includes scheduled contact with the person as well as ad-hoc contact should they need immediate support or advice. This may be particularly important for those in temporary or part-time employment to provide the specific support needed to progress to more sustainable permanent employment.
596. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection if she and her officials will address an anomaly with Turas Nua, whereby those that work in unconventional structures, for example arts professionals, are unable to select their type of freelance seasonal employment on their applications (details supplied). [32208/22]
Turas Nua is contracted by my Department to provide support and assistance to jobseekers seeking full time employment. This support is delivered through one to one intensive engagement with a case worker who will assist the jobseeker to identify and overcome barriers to employment. There is no barrier placed by Turas Nua or any other activation service of my Department on what employment a jobseeker may wish to pursue.
For the Deputy's information, the jobseeker's allowance for self employed professional artists was introduced to assist self-employed artists who are temporarily in need of additional income support but wish to continue as a professional artist. Any customers engaged with JobPath and who subsequently meet the criteria as a self-employed professional artist can be cancelled from the JobPath programme.
If the customer contacts their local Intreo Centre they will assess their circumstances to determine if they satisfy the criteria and if so, they can be withdrawn from the JobPath service.