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Younger workers may be enticed into applying for jobs with Clare County Council if a motion to aid unskilled youths is acted upon.

At the November meeting of the local authority, Cllr Ian Lynch (IND) successfully proposed a motion aiming to increase the skillset of young jobseekers within the county. He asked to trial an entry level scheme for the outdoor services of the Council which would recruit “unskilled youths” whilst also providing experience, skills training and creating “a pathway for progression”.

Senior executive officer with the Council’s HR department, Jason Murphy in response pointed out that since 2015 they have “continued to recruit and stabilise our workforce numbers”. He added, “The HR Department recognises the benefits of having a diverse workforce distributed across the county and continues to consider new and innovative means to broaden that diversity and opportunity for the widest benefit, this includes both young people and our outdoor services”.

He flagged that training and development opportunities are offered to all employees giving a “significant” window for career progression. The Council has recently re-commenced the student Co-op scheme with third level institutions. “In recent months we have completed a competition for a ‘Heavy Vehicles Mechanic’ apprenticeship in our Machinery Yard, through the LCETB, and discussions are on-going in respect of new opportunities that might be developed”.

Having read the reply, Cllr Lynch revealed he was “not too sure if Jason is going to take this on or not”. “The downturn in the construction industry has seen a lot of people with great skillsets apply for jobs within the Council”. The Kilrush representative felt the motion offered the chance to “reach out to younger people” while “increasing their skillset” and give the “possibility of being kept on within the Council”. Ian said such candidates could help Tidy Towns groups who “are struggling across the county”. “We spoke recently about the loss of jobs, this is a chance to take people on”.

Cllr Gerry Flynn (IND) seconded the motion and acknowledged the HR department as being “pretty proactive”. “It is important their engagement is broadened,” he added.

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