Fermanagh South Tyrone Sinn Féin Sinn Féin -- Building an Ireland of Equals

Drop in unemployment welcome but much more to do - Flanagan

Published: 21 January, 2015

Sinn Féin Employment spokesperson, Phil Flanagan MLA has welcomed the latest small drop in unemployment numbers but said there is still much to do.

Phil Flanagan said:

"The minister responsible for tackling unemployment, Arlene Foster, must take a strategically targeted approach to creating jobs in areas traditionally blighted by unemployment and inactivity.

"The ministerial sub group set up last week under the leadership of Martin McGuinness to tackle deep-rooted unemployment in the North West is a step in the right direction.

"There are plans to expand the remit of this group across a range of areas west of the Bann which have had stubbornly high rates of unemployment as a result of decades of discrimination and underinvestment.

"However, the latest figures would suggest not enough is being done to support and retain existing jobs. This survey would indicate that at best we are only spinning our wheels when it comes to reducing unemployment.

"There were 316 confirmed redundancies in December 2014, compared to 240 in December 2013, and a 10% increase in the number of confirmed redundancies over the last year.

"I believe much more needs to be done to encourage and assist indigenous companies to invest and expand, particularly into export markets.

"It is a fact that indigenous companies provide more stable and long-term job prospects but I feel that the same energy is not directed towards them as at multi-national conglomerates." CRÍOCH/END