Sinn Féin TD for Dublin South West Seán Crowe has called for TDs to support the party’s motion to defend community employment services from privatisation, saying that we should protect the not-for-profit and community-based ethos of employment services.

Speaking ahead of tonight’s debate on the motion, Teachta Crowe said:

“Sinn Féin’s motion is taking a stand for communities and sending the message loud and clear that our communities are not for sale. We must protect community employment services from privatisation. Sinn Féin are bringing forward this motion to stand up for communities and protect these vital services from being hollowed out by this government.

“Here in Dublin South West, we know the importance of the work that community employment services do, including at the South Dublin County Partnership which has three locations around Tallaght alone

“Sinn Féin have long campaigned against privatisation of job activation services, like the disastrous JobPath scheme, which has cost close to €300m since 2015. Putting profit margins above the needs of ordinary people helps no-one. This short-sighted approach only risks pushing people into unsuitable, short-term positions just to tick a box. It also risks pricing out LES and Job Clubs which have a strong community approach and walk-in options which meet communities’ needs.

“This must stop. Sinn Féin’s motion would compel the government to protect not-for-profit services and suspend all plans to tender out employment services. It would also establish a stakeholder forum between the Minister and Job Clubs and Local Employment Services, to bring forward solutions to allow current services to be maintained.

“I am calling on all TDs in Dublin South West to back Sinn Féin’s motion and send the clear message that our communities are not for sale. Stand up for communities and support the Sinn Féin motion to protect employment services from privatisation.”