Jobless figures drop but are ‘still too high’

by Gazette Reporter

While the number of people on the live register in north Dublin has fallen in recent months, unemployment figures are still considered too high in the local area.

In data released from the Central Statistics Office, September live register figures for the Swords region (including Donabate and Portrane) show a figure of 4,380, down from 4,653 in August, a decrease of 5.9%.

The figures also show that the number of people unemployed in the Balbriggan region (including Rush, Lusk, Skerries, Balrothery and rural villages) was 4,704 in September, which was down 165 from the August figure of 4,869. When comparing the figures to the September 2012 numbers, it shows an annual percentage decrease of 5.2% in Balbriggan and 4.1% in Swords.

Labour TD Brendan Ryan said while he welcomes the downward trend in the number of those jobless in north Dublin, the overall unemployment figure for the area “remains very high”.

“It is important to see the numbers on the live register trending downwards. We are seeing that over the past year and it is my belief that this trend will continue. We are still a long way away from where we need to be in terms of employment levels, however we are facing in the right direction.”

The CSO figures show that young people in Swords represent 15% of the total unemployment in the area, with 676 people under the age of 25 without a job.

“The problem of youth unemployment needs to be tackled with even greater energy,” Deputy Ryan said.

While local Cllr Darragh Butler (FF) also welcomed what he described as a “small reduction”, he says a lot more still needs to be done.

“The Government got elected on promises that they were going to put a lot into job creation and reducing unemployment but I’m concerned that the figures are still quite high.”

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