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Govt. to Review Policy re Permits for 'Low-Skilled' Migrants

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  • 04-01-2018 8:09pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 829 ✭✭✭


    Hopefully here in the Politics Forum this thread will have some decent debate without descending into anarchy.

    Anyways, the Indo today reported that the Government is to review the current employment permits regime as the economy booms and unemployment falls. https://www.independent.ie/business/irish/visas-for-lowskilled-migrants-may-be-loosened-36456499.html

    No decisions taken yet.

    Now, I get that labour shortages in any particular sector could be a drag on growth but for me, it throws up a good few questions, which I don't really have any answers to.

    Taking the example on the article of the need for 5000 chefs! How on Earth did it ever get to this stage? What are the reasons for the shortage? Is it a failure of vocational training - if so why?

    We're close to full employment, so maybe we just literally don't have enough bodies, but can we do more to use this strength in the labour market to get the remaining unemployed (to be clear - I am not including anyone on disability in this) back into the workforce? Better training? X number of months jobless after gaining employment if earning under a certain threshold to give an added incentive?

    It did occur to me that maybe they could just wave through a number of asylum applicants currently in direct provision, but I suppose it is more proper that their asylum cases are looked at on their merits.

    There remains a massive amount of unemployment across Europe - particularly youth unemployment - as of August it stood at >35% in Greece, Italy and Spain. Surely that's an adequate pool of labour for Irish businesses to tap into? Are the Irish businesses just not being proactive, and want the labour to come to them? Or, more cynically, is it a cost issue - do they think they can get away with lower pay and/or employment standards with non-EEA workers?

    It's mentioned in the article that wage growth has picked up over the last few years. Couldn't we do with more of this for another few years. I understand we can't let labour costs go so far as we become 'uncompetitive' but there's a lot of people around Ireland that bore all of the downside during the crash through unemployment and cuts to pay or benefits, but might not get much in the way of upside if the Govt. acts to (indirectly) suppress real wage growth. There ought to be some middle ground?

    A quote from the article: "(The department) is going to mess up our entire growth in our economy by being stuck in the dark ages around work permits."

    The economy has been the fastest (or close to it) growing economy in Europe for the past number of years. Is trying to attain such rates of growth in perpetuity necessarily a good thing? Would seem obvious to me that Dublin (particularly) is going through some growing pains at the moment - the housing shortage being the obvious one. Does the country need to take a bit of a breather and demonstrate some progress towards fixing the housing shortage and other problems in public services?


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,888 ✭✭✭tabby aspreme


    I wonder who compiles these reports, 5000 chefs needed between 26 counties


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,676 ✭✭✭strandroad


    Ronaldinho wrote: »
    We're close to full employment, so maybe we just literally don't have enough bodies

    Ireland's workforce participation is very low: 64.6% for men, 55.9% for women in 2013 (compare to Sweden at 76.3% and 72.5%). Source: http://www.cso.ie/en/releasesandpublications/ep/p-wamii/womenandmeninireland2013/employmentlist/employment/

    Looking at recent stats, it did not improve with the economic upturn, averaging ca 60% across the board.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,458 ✭✭✭rgossip30


    So how does one account for the supposed 6.1 % the government boasts about . I assume its the high number of young people and the high number on pensions in the whole population .


  • Registered Users Posts: 27,421 ✭✭✭✭blanch152


    rgossip30 wrote: »
    So how does one account for the supposed 6.1 % the government boasts about . I assume its the high number of young people and the high number on pensions in the whole population .

    There are a number of factors in our low participation rates. These would include:

    - very high participation rates in tertiary education by young people
    - legacy pension schemes that allow early retirement, particularly for prison officers, gardai and teachers
    - relatively generous (by european norms) arrangements for the payment of lone parent allowace and lack of facilitated return to work schemes for same
    - relatively generous (by european norms) arrangements for disability payments, with one of the highest proportions of the population receiving disability allowance
    - combination of tax policy not being fully individualised and universal child benefit making it possible for some couples to have one person working in the home

    Just a couple of clarifications: I am not saying any of the above are good or bad, in relation to both the pensions and social welfare, I am not saying anything about the rates, it is the conditions for payment that are generous.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 16,015 ✭✭✭✭James Brown


    If there's work for them, why not?
    Maybe high demand should mean competitive hiring regarding salary, before we increase the number of low paid unskilled workers by importing them?
    During the last boom we had a glut of low paying unskilled jobs as I recall. This was the boom for the low paid, low skilled worker.
    My only concern with any skilled would be rather than up-skilling low paid unskilled Irish workers, we may be by-passing them. Especially the anecdotal 'won't work' folk.
    Generally, it's not easy to get into a trade unless you know somebody already in the game.


    What ever your politics, a flourishing economy and varying crises shouldn't be growing in tandem with each other.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,450 ✭✭✭weisses


    Ronaldinho wrote: »
    Taking the example on the article of the need for 5000 chefs! How on Earth did it ever get to this stage? What are the reasons for the shortage? Is it a failure of vocational training - if so why?

    Very Low wages, working unsociable hours, weekends, Bank Holidays with no paid overtime etc etc .... Talking from experience

    So people look for other careers


  • Registered Users Posts: 33,344 ✭✭✭✭NIMAN


    But they can't restrict migrants from the EU, can they?
    Anyone EU citizen who wants to come into Ireland can without fear of being stopped.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,450 ✭✭✭weisses


    NIMAN wrote: »
    But they can't restrict migrants from the EU, can they?
    Anyone EU citizen who wants to come into Ireland can without fear of being stopped.

    Yup .... Not that they necessary want to but yes


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