Deputy John Deasy asked the Minister for Social Protection position regarding the ECJ ruling as to the Irish State’s obligation to adequately protect the pension entitlements of former Waterford Crystal employees; when the judgment is likely to go to be reviewed in the High Court.
Reply from Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton: The ruling by the European Court of Justice was in response to a reference by the High Court seeking clarification of the interpretation of European law emanating from EU Directive 2008/94EC on the protection of employees in the event of the insolvency of their employer.
Following the ECJ ruling, the matter will now revert to the High Court for consideration. It is anticipated that the Court will set a date for the hearing of this case shortly.
Answered on July 9, 2013
Deputy John Deasy asked the Minister for Social Protection her views as to the reason Ireland has an unemployment rate of 30.3% in the 15 to 24 age group, almost double the OECD average of 16.2%.
Reply from Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton: In Q4, 2012, OECD data show that Ireland had a youth unemployment rate of 29.2% and an unemployment rate of 14.3% for all persons in the labour force. This compares to an overall OECD youth unemployment rate of 16.4%, with 8% unemployment in the OECD labour force. In both instances, the rate of youth unemployment is slightly double the rate of unemployment in the overall economy.
Young people, typically, suffer disproportionately from job losses in recessions as they tend to have entered employment more recently, are more likely to hold temporary contracts and to be employed in cyclically sensitive industries than older workers. The youth unemployment rate in Ireland is higher than the OECD average as the overall level of unemployment is higher in Ireland than in the OECD.
Dáil Éireann allocates a certain amount of time on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays during which Deputies may ask questions of Members of the Government relating to Public Affairs connected with their Departments, or on matters of administration for whch they are officially responsible. The Taoiseach answers questions on his own Department on Tuesdays/Wednesdays.