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    Budget 2012

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    Tom O Brien
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    Budget 2012

    Post by Tom O Brien on Sat Jan 14, 2012 11:16 am

    Maureen O'Sullivan (Dublin Central, Independent)

    Question 369: To ask the Minister for Social Protection if she will reverse the cuts imposed on the FÁS special community employment drug rehab projects which will see their operational and training budget cut by 66%; the reasons for such targeting of cuts to vital services; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [41096/11]

    Joan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)

    The announced changes to the allowances and grants payable to Community Employment programmes and participants were not restricted to the special Community Employment drug rehabilitation projects. Such projects continue to maintain the favourable criteria enjoyed by them in relation to supervisor ratios, support workers, duration and eligibility criteria.
    Following changes to Community Employment schemes announced in Budget 2012, the Government is fully committed to the protection and development of community and social employment initiatives. A financial review of CE schemes will commence immediately. No Community Employment scheme will close pending the outcome of this financial review.
    The purpose of the review will be to establish the on-going viability of each scheme in the context of the overall CE program and recognising in particular the community and social value of each CE scheme.

    In the event that the reduction in the training and material grant announced in the Budget creates financial difficulties for schemes that would otherwise be viable, the Department will explore the options in relation continued funding for such schemes.


    Maureen O'Sullivan (Dublin Central, Independent)

    Question 370: To ask the Minister for Social Protection if she recognises the full scope of effects due to the cuts to community employment programmes in working class communities, including creches and community projects which rely on community employment workers to provide these services; the action she will take to prevent the closing down of such programmes due to the inability of community employment workers to continue working without the social welfare support; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [41097/11]

    Joan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)

    Following changes to Community Employment schemes announced in Budget 2012, the Government is fully committed to the protection and development of community and social employment initiatives. A financial review of CE schemes will commence immediately. No Community Employment scheme will close pending the outcome of this financial review.
    The purpose of the review will be to establish the on-going viability of each scheme in the context of the overall CE program and recognising in particular the community and social value of each CE scheme. In the event that the reduction in the training and material grant announced in the Budget creates financial difficulties for schemes that would otherwise be viable, the Department will explore the options in relation continued funding for such schemes. Existing participants will maintain their existing Social Welfare supports. The only change for existing participants will be the non-payment of the concurrent Child Dependent allowance from Community Employment. They will continue to receive this allowance from Social Welfare.
    It is important to note that irrespective of the changes announced, all participants, both existing and new, will be financially better off while participating on Community Employment.


    Maureen O'Sullivan (Dublin Central, Independent)

    Question 371: To ask the Minister for Social Protection that when undertaking a review of community employment schemes, that persons from those community employment schemes will be invited to speak on their behalf regarding the situation of cuts to CE schemes; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [41098/11]

    Joan Burton (Minister, Department of Social Protection; Dublin West, Labour)

    This financial review of Community Employment schemes announced will in the first instance be carried at local level between regional Department of Social Protection staff with each Sponsor. This will involve a meeting with each Sponsor and the gathering of information relating to the operation and the services delivered by each project.
    In addition, during the financial review process Department staff will undertake consultations with the main stakeholders including other government department and agencies on whose behalf services are delivered to local communities with the support of Community Employment.

      Current date/time is Sat Oct 21, 2017 2:05 pm