The Irish Local Development Network (ILDN), representing the Country’s 49 Local Development Companies including Local Employment Services and Jobs Clubs, have today welcomed the publication of an unprecedented Pre-Budget Submission by the Joint Oireachtas Committee for Social Protection, Rural & Community Development, and the Islands.

Commenting on the details of the Committee’s proposals, ILDN Chairman Jim Finn responded; “the Committee’s support for the retention of Local Employment Services & Jobs Clubs is significant. The Government has decided to end these vital services at the end of the year. This intervention by the Joint Oireachtas Committee including Government Party members must provide Minister Humphreys and the Department of Social Protection pause for thought. It is critical that the Minister now convenes a stakeholders group involving members of the Committee and civil society including the ILDN to properly plan a way forward for the future of Community based employment services which preserves and expands the role of Local Employment Services & Jobs Clubs.”

 “We are thankful to the Chairperson and members of the Committee for their work on this Pre-Budget Submission and for the hearing they gave the ILDN in the process of developing this document. It is heartening to see many of our priorities reflected in the Committee’s submission and supported by all Parties and none.”

 “We particularly welcome the Committee’s support for our proposals to reform the Rural Social Scheme (RSS), Tús and the Community Employment Scheme. In our own Pre-Budget Submission, we set out detailed proposals in terms of maximising eligibility and participation in these schemes which align with the recommendations of the Joint Oireachtas Committee.”

ILDN Pre-Budget Submission:

 Joint Oireachtas Committee Pre-Budget Submission: