Boot camp would help those on the dole
Plans are under way in the UK to introduce boot camps for young people who are unemployed.
There has been a good bit of debate as to the merits of such a scheme but I think that, if implemented properly it could do a lot of good.
This type of thing would be invaluable to young Irish on the dole and who need a push in the right direction to get into the workforce.
The boot camps will apply to those aged 18-21 and will offer them support in preparing for interviews and updating their CVs and those who fail to engage will see their benefits gradually cut.
This can only be a positive thing for young people who have been unable to secure work and who are claiming benefits. For young people, in particular there can be a more laid back attitude towards launching themselves into the workforce and as a result they risk falling into the 'long time unemployed' category.
Instead, if they can be supported and encouraged to secure a job and to have their confidence boosted ahead of an interview then they are much more likely to engage. There are bound to be some candidates who are happy to sign up and try their best to gain employment and others who see the whole exercise as a waste of time.
These are the people who will do the bare minumum to ensure they hang onto their benefits and disappointing as this is they won't make the most of the opportunity.
The merit behind offering this assistance to the 18-21 year age group is obvious yet there should also be extra support for older people who have either been claiming for many years or those who find themselves unemployed following years of being in a job and without having to apply for a new role or sit an interview.
Getting back into the workforce can be a daunting and challenging experience which would be made much more positive with the right supports and not just a person behind a desk ticking boxes on a form.
Anyone who wants to work and contibute to society has nothing to fear from such boot camps and those who are happy to stay on the dole will be motivated by the threat to their weekly funds. While unemployment is still a worrying factor in post recession Ireland now is the time that we should be assisting those on the live register the most so that when new jobs are announced they can apply with confidence.