Further Reduction in LR figures Welcomed

11 May 2004

The Irish National Organisation of the Unemployed welcomes the reduction of 4,200 people off the Live Register for April 2004. This now brings the total number of claimants to 166,200. The reductions were noted in all regions with the South West region recording the highest reduction.

‘These figures are welcome especially if they are being geographically spread across the country’, said Mr Eric Conroy, General Secretary INOU. ‘However, it should be borne in mind that the Live Register figures are not a true measurement of unemployment and as a result does not necessarily mean that everyone moving from the Live Register entered employment. It could be a case where individuals moved to another social welfare payment and will still require assistance to help them return to the labour market.’

Similarly, despite regional reductions being recorded in the Live Register there is a big disparity between these figures and those recorded using the Principal Economic Status (PES) method. The PES is when people state their own economic status. These figures record a much higher level of unemployment and even identify ‘unemployment blackspots’, particularly in some rural areas.