“Further cuts in benefits won’t solve long-term unemployment”, say S&D Euro MPs

Europe gives a push in the fight against youth unemployment

S&D Euro MPs today welcome the European Commission’s recommendations to fight long term unemployment in Europe.
S&D group spokeswoman on employment and social affairs Jutta Steinruck said:
”The tone from this Commission on social issues has changed and this is good news.  Among the 23 million unemployed, 12 million are facing long-term unemployment. This must be our number one priority. We need to better integrate the long-term unemployed into the labour market instead of further cuts to unemployment benefits."
"We must not forget the social-psychological dimension of the problem. For many long-term unemployed it is not enough just to get a job. They need intensive preparation and assistance for successful re-entry into the labour market."
"To successfully tackle the problem of long-term unemployment we need a strong social dialogue. It is important in this context for employers to realize that qualified staff will not appear from nowhere, rather it is their responsibility to train and qualify their employees."

S&D Group spokesperson on this issue Spanish Euro MP Javi López added:
"A more progressive approach to tackle long-term unemployment should not only be based on training and skills but also on the inclusiveness of labour markets, better counselling and support of job-seekers and in-work benefits”.
“Inclusive hiring practices need to be promoted to remove barriers that prevent long-term unemployed workers from applying or being considered for positions. Discrimination practices against long-term unemployed job seekers have to be addressed”.
“We need long-term solutions for long-term unemployment problems.  They must combine strong job creation, adequate income benefits, effective coordination between employment, social assistance and social services and individualised and tailored approaches.”
“We must ensure that workers are encouraged to participate in effective activation measures but not forced into them as a precondition to have access to unemployment benefits, which most of the times just serves to impoverish workers but not to motivate them as jobseekers”.