Sinn Féin TD for Dublin South West Seán Crowe has called on the Government to provide clarity around extensions for participants in schemes like Community Employment, Tús, and the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance, as well as any other schemes where participants have lost out on the training benefits that come with these schemes but haven’t happened due to Covid-19 pandemic.

Teachta Crowe said:

“Over the last year, thousands of participants on training schemes rolled out by the Department of Social Protection, such as Community Employment, Tús, and the Back to Work Enterprise Allowance, have really lost out in getting trained and upskilled

“Participants on these schemes typically would have benefited from a wide range of training opportunities and work experience which has not happened for the majority of those taking part.

“Participants shouldn’t miss out on these opportunities because of the Covid-19 pandemic and I am calling on the Government to extend time on these schemes for the participants if they feel that they need an extension.

“In a small number of cases, some schemes have been able to remain operational in our communities, particularly those on Community Employment who provide many community-based essential services that otherwise would not exist.

“We know that no sector has been immune from the wider effects of the public health crisis; it has impacted every aspect of our lives, but surely in cases like this where we can assist and support those impacted such as those on these training schemes, we could do more.

“I am calling on the Government to extend the timescale of these schemes to allow trainees gain every opportunity to upskill and increase their work opportunities when the COVID crisis passes.”