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The 'We're Not Leaving' youth protest in October outside Leinster House, Dublin, in November Photo by: Photocall

4,000 Irish social welfare letters encourage young people to emigrate

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The 'We're Not Leaving' youth protest in October outside Leinster House, Dublin, in November Photo by: Photocall

Ireland’s department of Social Protection has sent 4,000 letters to young people urging that they move abroad to find employment.

The letters, released by the Social Protection Minister Joan Burton, reportedly urge “people on the dole to go to the UK, Spain, France and Norway if they want a job,” according to the Mirror.

The Fianna Fail party says mailing out these letters to social welfare recipients is “a disgraceful tactic” and claims Ireland’s government has “given up on young people.”

Burton said: “It is important to note there is no obligation on unemployed job seekers in receipt of income supports to apply for overseas vacancies.

“In notifying job seekers of such vacancies the Department is simply drawing their attention to vacancies that exist and that are simultaneously being brought to the attention of job seekers in other countries.

Willie O’Dea, Fianna Fail’s Social Protection spokesman, called this tactic a damning indictment of the Irish Government’s job policy.

He said “It is now blatantly obvious that a central plank of the Government’s plans to tackle unemployment is emigration.

“It is a disgraceful tactic by this Government. It seems to have given up on young people.

He added “You can’t pretend you are fixing the problem when you are in reality exporting it.”

Burton told the Mirror that more must be done at Cabinet level to take people off the Live Register.

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