In a statement today the United Left Alliance said that the policies of the establishment parties would condemn a generation to unemployment and emigration.
Fianna Fail and the Greens have put almost 450,000 people are on the dole, with 25,000 more predicted to join the queues by the end of the year. Fine Gael wants to cut 30,000 jobs from the public sector. And Labour’s plan would mean at least 18,000 job losses. Meanwhile, up to a thousand people are leaving Ireland every week – the ESRI predicts 100,000 people will go by April 2012.
Councillor Joan Collins, People Before Profit/ULA (Dublin South Central) said
“On the streets and in the estates, people are worried about unemployment and their children’s future yet most of the election debate has been focused on the needs of bankers and developers. The anguish suffered by many parents as their children emigrate is being ignored.
“It’s outrageous that with so many unemployed the government has already pumped €55 billion into the banks that have brought this country to its knees. According to the Department of Finance, every €1 billion invested could create 8,000 to 12,000 jobs. So if that €55 billion had gone into hospitals, schools, public transport, housing we might have 440,000 jobs instead of today’s mass unemployment and emigration.”
Brian Greene, Socialist Party/ULA (Dublin North East) said:
“UNITE the union has called for €15 billion to be invested in jobs over the next five years. Rather than get behind this call Labour say they would put half a billion euros into a jobs fund. At the same time, they and Fine Gael would implement the EU-IMF deal and give another €35 billion for the banks. This amount of money could create 280,000 jobs.
“Labour’s jobs plan is woefully inadequate and is in stark contrast to the huge sums they are willing to give the bankers.
“For all their pious talk of change, Fine Gael and Labour have the same priorities as Fianna Fail: pay the banks – let working people and the poor foot the bill.
“It’s widely recognised that Ireland cannot pay a debt of this size. We say ‘Can’t pay; won’t pay’. Tax the wealthy and invest in jobs to get people off the dole and keep our children at home.”