Tuesday 23 May 2017

Our long-term jobless crisis

THE figures released by the Central Statistics Office yesterday on long-term unemployment are disturbing. While the rate of total unemployment is slowing, the number of those out of work long-term is rising sharply.

Almost 70,000 people joined the ranks of the long-term jobless in the third quarter of the year, bringing the total to 140,400. That means they now account for almost 47pc of total unemployment compared with 25.5pc a year earlier. This is a cancerous growth at the heart of our society and economy. For so many to languish without a job for more than a year is an issue requiring urgent attention.

Even the European Central Bank (ECB) was moved yesterday to declare the problem a cause for concern across the EU and one that necessitates concerted action.

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