THE Government came under fire this week from Offaly County Councillor John Foley when he stated it was a disgrace that ‘highly educated young people are not being given a chance of gaining employment in our country’.
Edenderry based Cllr Foley, a former general election candidate, explained, “Throughout North Offaly, I have met many parents who have seen their children having to emigrate to get work, when in many cases perfectly suitable jobs that were available in this country were taken up by recently retired people.
“This is what this Government is doing, while also sending Trade missions abroad seeking foreign companies to invest here and avail of our hugely well-educated and young workforce. Is this not Hypocrisy?”
He added, “It is time that the Government woke up to the fact that allowing someone to retire and then re-employing them in the same position some weeks later does not make any sort of economic sense and is massively demoralising to the hundreds of highly educated, talented and enthusiastic young people hungry for an opportunity to gain employment.”
Cllr Foley warned, “If we do not act soon to stop this ludicrous practice, most of these people will have left our shores and countries like Canada, Australia and others will benefit from our stupidity.”
And he said the current economic situation isn’t to blame either. “Earlier this year, the government accepted early retirement applications from almost 4,000 civil and public servants. It was then decided that there was a need to fill a sizeable proportion of these vacancies. This provided a golden opportunity to show faith in our young people. Did this happen? Of course not!
“A large section of those who availed of the early retirement packages were rehired, totally ignoring the plight of the hordes of highly qualified and highly educated unemployed.”