Thursday 22 February 2018

Thousands join queue for jobs fair

Childcare worker Niamh Gregory at Jobs Expo 2012 in Dublin yesterday
Childcare worker Niamh Gregory at Jobs Expo 2012 in Dublin yesterday

Gareth Naughton

THOUSANDS of people attended a jobs expo at the RDS in Dublin over the weekend, with emigration still high on the agenda for some.

Jobs Expo 2012 attracted jobseekers from across the country, including childcare worker Niamh Gregory (25) from Rathfarnham in south Dublin, who was let go from her job in February and has been relying on casual work since then.

"It is slow. I just cannot get a job," she said.

She and her boyfriend have considered moving to Australia in search of work but cannot afford the fare.

"He's an electrician so he is out of work for a long time. If we had the money we would be gone tomorrow. I would love to stay in Ireland but I don't know if it is feasible," she said.

Just under 9,000 people attended the expo at the weekend, with exhibitors like Canadian engineering company JV Driver actively recruiting.

By the end of yesterday, the company had narrowed down 50 applicants for further interview in the coming weeks.

Canada will soon be home to draughtsman Ronan Conboy from Newbridge in Co Kildare, who is awaiting visa approval, having applied when he was made redundant last Christmas.

"I'll do the year and if I like it, I'll try for sponsorship," he said.

There was also evidence of how Ireland's Celtic Tiger immigrant boom is going into reverse with people like Mick Cave from New Zealand making plans to return home after 10 years here.

"It has been a year and a half since I last worked . . . I would like to come back in a few years but there is nothing here at the moment," he said.

Lisburn couple Kevin and Noreen Moore brought their two children Bronwyn (12) and Victoria (6) with them as they chatted with exhibitors.

Plasterer Kevin has been unemployed for two years and Noreen lost her job as a school librarian at Easter. The couple haven't ruled out the possibility of emigrating.

"We are very positive about the future . . . You have to keep your passion alive and keep the flag flying," said Ms Moore.

Irish Independent

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