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Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Dole we can't afford

There is some interesting data hidden in the latest live register figures today.

There are currently 18,120 people from the UK signing on in Ireland. These are people who do not hold Irish passports, so include Britons but not necessarily Northern Irish people.

There are 3,902 people signing on who come from the old EU15 (minus Britain and Ireland, that is.) That includes French people, Germans, Spanish, Italians, Danes, etc.

There are 40,427 people signing on who come from the EU accession states - Poland, Latvia, Lithuania, etc.

And there are 13,926 people signing on who come from elsewhere.

We can do nothing about the right of EU citizens to take benefit payments from Ireland, even if we cannot afford it.

But these figures indicate that for every Western European signing on (and remember they have had the right to live and work here for generations) there are TEN Eastern Europeans signing on (who have only had the right to live and work here for the past few years.)

And we are apparently paying dole to nearly 14,000 people who do NOT come from the EU.

My question is simply, why?


Annie said...

I tried to sign on last year when my job finished and was told I couldn't as Ireland isn't my home country. I contested it, explaining that a) I have been living and working in Ireland for three years and very much consider it my home and b) I am an Irish citizen because my mother is Irish. They still said (very nicely, mind) that I wasn't entitled.

Fair enough, whatever, I got another job anyway, but I do wonder how so many other people manage to sign on. It's a pretty tough rigmarole you have to go through. I can't see that many people are able to undeservedly sign on here if I couldn't.

JC Skinner said...

Strange isn't it that you, an Irish citizen born in the UK were refused state benefits, yet somehow 14,000 people from OUTSIDE THE EU are able to receive them?
Something in the system is very badly broken.

Conan Drumm said...

The answer is simple, and roughly as follows.

Entitlement is based on the length of time over which you have made PRSI contributions within Ireland, whatever your nationality, or in other EU member states (particularly Britain where, I think, contributions have long been accepted in Ireland, for obvious reasons).

So lots of Irish people (the self-employed especially, and those who do not have sufficient contribution credits) are not entitled to benefit or allowance simply because they haven't clocked up enough contributions. Whereas a Philipina nurse with seven years contributions who finds herself unemployed is absolutely entitled to benefit payments. Nothing 'broken' about that at all.

JC Skinner said...

That's how it currently works. And it's broken because it is wrong that we pay non-EU nationals to sit on the dole here while refusing benefits to our own people.

Cian said...

In many cases, we don't. The Phillipino nurse who worked for seven years paid for her dole, in PRSI contributions. I don't see how we'd expect her to pay PRSI but gain no benefits from it.

JC Skinner said...

How many unemployed Filipino nurses are there in Ireland, Cian? I'd say not one.