The union body representing Irish students in Ireland (USI) staged a protest against the lack of action by Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Innovation, Batt O’Keeffe, in dealing with the mass numbers of graduates out of work in the country.
On Monday, thousands of students and graduates held a demonstration outside O’Keefe’s offices in Co. Cork.
The Central Statistics Office in Ireland is reporting that 91,646 people, under the age of 25, are unemployed in the recession bitten country.
USI President Gary Redmond is concerned about the mass numbers of graduates that are forced to leave Ireland in search of employment in other countries.
Said Redmond, “Thousands of valuable graduates have already left Irish shores and USI believes that Minister O’Keeffe must work harder to prevent many more thousands of graduates from emigrating in the future.
“USI will continue to voice the concerns of Ireland’s students and graduates, who are anxious to be given the opportunity to rebuild Ireland’s economy, and contribute to the future prosperity of this island.”
He added: “Last week Minister O’Keeffe requested the help of the Union of Students in Ireland (USI) to combat graduate unemployment. However, despite our request for an urgent meeting, the Minister has so far failed to meet with us. Each additional day that Minister O’Keeffe puts this issue on the long finger, more and more of our highly skilled graduates are leaving the country, many of whom will never return. His inaction is crippling the future of Ireland’s smart economy, and USI will not stand idly by while the government lets this country fall to ruin.
“The Government has invested millions in an attempt to create a workforce that is renowned across the globe for is expertise and innovative capacity. Therefore, it can only be seen as ludicrous to deny our graduates any opportunity to repay that investment by forcing them to emigrate,” Redmond concluded.