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Minister Burton: Live Register reduction a further step in right direction

The Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton TD, has today (Wednesday 2 October 2013) welcomed the latest data from the Central Statistics Office which shows an annual drop of 20,665 in the Live Register.

The Minister said the figures were evidence that the Department of Social Protection’s Pathways to Work strategy was helping people back to work.

“There are now 408,670 people on the Live Register, which is 20,665 fewer than at this time last year. While the numbers out of work are still far too high, we are making sustained and welcome progress. When the seasonal volatility in the Register is adjusted for, this is the 15th month in a row that the Register has fallen.

“Since coming to office, I have focused on transforming the Department from the passive benefits provider of old to an active, engaged and focused employment service. Activation policy, which is central to the Pathways to Work strategy, is about ensuring that jobseekers receive the employment supports they need as well as income supports,” Minister Burton said.

“The results of this transformative approach are now becoming evident, and I am confident we will see the Live Register fall beneath 400,000 later this year for the first time since May 2009, when the previous administration was lurching further into economic chaos and towards the Troika bailout.  Helping people back to work is the best way of reducing welfare expenditure, as every 10,000 drop in the Live Register saves approximately €95 million.”

The Minister also pointed to the latest Pathways to Work quarterly performance report, which shows that the Department is ahead of its targets for moving long-term unemployed people into work, completing personal profiles of jobseekers on the Live Register, and providing group engagement sessions to jobseekers.

“Our core aim is to engage with every unemployed person to make sure that their first day out of a job is also their first step on the pathway back to work. It is essential now that we accelerate the fight against long-term unemployment in particular, and that is why I established a Labour Market Council of industry and policy experts recently to drive implementation of the Pathways 2013 strategy.

“Together with the Action Plan for Jobs overseen by my Cabinet colleague, Minister Bruton, Pathways to Work is making a real difference in helping people back to work and building the economic recovery.”

Notes to editors:

The Department of Social Protection is the lead Department on Pathways to Work, which complements the Government’s Action Plan for Jobs. The Action Plan for Jobs is designed to accelerate the transition to a sustainable, jobs-rich economy, while Pathways to Work aims to ensure that as many as possible of those newly created jobs go to people on the Live Register.

Pathways to Work Performance Report for Q2 2013 available here:

Details of the Labour Market Council available here: