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More than 15,000 Jobseekers have been on allowance for at least 10 years

Ms O’Brien said some people face discrimination as they try to find work


Neil FetherstonhaughSunday World

More than 15,000 people on Jobseekers Allowance have been receiving the benefit for at least 10 years, new figures have revealed.

Of those 15,000, more than 4,000 of them are in Dublin, the figures released to Newstalk show.

The Department of Social Protection released the figures under Freedom of Information legislation.

The statistic also reveal that 30,158 people have been on Jobseeker's Allowance (JA) for at least five years.

Of those, 15,255 have been on the weekly payment for at least a decade.

Some 4,037 of those are in Dublin.

The next highest numbers are in Cork, Donegal, Galway, Louth and Wexford – which all have at least 700.

Bríd O'Brien from the Irish National Organisation of the Unemployed told Newstalk there are many reasons people can find themselves long-term unemployed.

“The longer you’re out of work, the more difficult it can be to get in work, which is why then good advice and support is critical,” she said.

“People may need to reskill, retrain. Even just getting the advice – getting a job is a job in itself. The majority of us aren’t great at it so people do need good pointers and advice around how to secure a job, how to apply for a job, how to present yourself.”

Ms O’Brien said some people face discrimination as they try to find work.

“It can depend on the community people are from,” she said. “There are exclusion in our labour market, particular communities find it very difficult to find work – the Traveller community in particular.

She said people also face ‘post codism’, which is prejudice based on where they live.

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