Labour Youth has today welcomed the announcement by Tánaiste Joan Burton that a review into the impact of lower welfare rates on under 26s will be undertaken by the Department of Social Protection.
Labour Youth has opposed the cut to young Jobseeker’s Allowance since it was introduced in Budget 2014 and ran a long campaign on the issue in the build-up to Budget 2016.
National Chairperson, Grace Williams, said: “Labour Youth was disappointed at the news that Budget 2016 did not raise young Jobseeker’s Allowance.
“Age-based discrimination should not be allowed to continue. While I acknowledge that many young people are now securing jobs because the Government has turned the economy around, I believe that we should be included in the national recovery to an even greater extent. To this end, Labour Youth will continue to fight to see Jobseeker’s for under 26s increased.
“However, we welcome the engagement that we have received on the issue from Tánaiste Joan Burton and from the entire parliamentary Labour Party.
“Our lobbying campaign has been relentless. After Budget 2016 was announced, our organisation was adamant to continue in seeking the reversal of this cut.
“We lobbied for a review into the effects of lowered welfare rates so that evidence of the daily struggles of young and unemployed people could be used in furthering this campaign.
“The announcement of a review into the impacts of welfare rates on young people is a step towards changing this policy. We hope to see these results recommend an increase in young Jobseeker’s Allowance.
“Labour Youth will continue with this campaign. While the review is welcome progress, we are under no illusion that this does not change the daily struggles for young people in Ireland, and we will continue to push for an increase in young Jobseeker’s Allowance in the next budget.”