The President of the Workers’
Party, Michael Finnegan has said that the government has given a clear signal that it does not care about the unemployed,
by abolishing the Employment ministry in the midst of a national jobs crisis.
Mr. Finnegan said that
the renaming of the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Employment as the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Innovation effectively
puts job creation on the back burner.
”Since the foundation
of this state there has always been a specific Minister with responsibility for job creation.
Countess Markievicz made history as the first female government minister in the world when she was made Minister for
Labour in the first Dáil cabinet in 1919. The country had a Minister for Labour
for the next seventy five years until it was subsumed into Enterprise, Trade and Employment. Now it has disappeared, its role being subsumed
into a department driven by the promotion of capital and big business”, said Mr. Finnegan.
“We now have almost
half a million workers out of work in this country. Many thousands more are extremely
worried about their jobs while those still in employment are under unprecedented attack with pay cuts, levies and cutbacks.
We need a dedicated employment ministry now more than ever before in our history. The
reshuffle announced by the Taoiseach today is utterly irrelevant to workers of this country and their family. It is window dressing in an empty store and has more to do with shoring up this government than anything
else”, the Workers Party President said.
Issued 23rd March 2010