Good to see FF commit to creating the 250,000 jobs they lost
It is welcome today to see Fianna Fáil commit to the creation of 250,000 jobs over the next five years, given that this is precisely the number of jobs that were lost under their watch from 2008-2011.
Their jobs proposals concentrate on boosting employment across the SME sector, but this was precisely the area that was devastated during the economic crash that Fianna Fáil oversaw.
Over that period, the unemployment rate soared, and many people were forced out of the country to find work. Only after Fianna Fáil were out of office did the job of getting unemployment under control really begin, and the dramatic turnaround in Ireland’s economic fortunes commence.
While Ireland fortunately retained many multinationals and exporting companies during the deep recession, SMEs had to be built up and supported to get the domestic economy back on its feet again. Labour in government committed wholeheartedly to doing so. Through a combination of programmes such as the annual Action Plan for Jobs, activation schemes such as Pathways to Work, and our investment in apprenticeships and traineeships, we have helped grow business and get people back to work.
Our next challenge is to ensure that these jobs are spread around the country and not just concentrated in the large urban centres.
With an uncertain international economic environment, now is the time to stay the course and allow The Labour Party to stay the course and continue to deliver the jobs that Fianna Fáil lost.