Here we post a strong statement from Joe Higgins TD condemning Joan Burton’s attack on the unemployed, which in reality is a cover for Government’s failure to create jobs.
The statement by the alleged Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton, that young people are choosing to go on the dole as a ‘lifestyle choice’ is an arrogant and gratuitous insult to a generation cruelly betrayed by the current economic system and totally let down by a government that is floundering in face of the need to create tens of thousands of new jobs.
The reality is that young people are desperately anxious to find employment but with 440,000 ahead of them in the queue, it is near impossible for many of them.
Minister Burton is clumsily attempting to justify further cuts in social welfare and to distract attention from the Fine Gael/Labour government’s failure to create the jobs that are needed. The so called Jobs Initiative built on on a minor tinkering with PRSI rates and travel tax is an utterly feeble response.
It is quite clear that Minister Burton is also trying to create a climate to push unemployed young people into the so called internship programme, which is in reality a threadbare attempt to reduce the figures on the dole with make believe jobs that will leave young people wide open to exploitation.
Young people, like a majority in society, are victims of an economic system driven by greed in the financial markets which hold the political establishment in thrall in Ireland and right across Europe. The solution is to break from this system, stop paying billions to financial institutions for bad debts for which working people have no responsibility, bring the financial system into public ownership and democratic control and initiate major infrastructural programmes that will create real jobs and rebuild an economy crushed by the disastrous austerity programme dictated by the markets.