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Thursday, June 3, 2010

EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT Press Release EGF

The following is a Press Release from The European Parliament:
A delegation of MEPs from the European Parliament's Employment Committee will arrive in Ireland this evening to look at the implementation of the European Globalisation Adjustment Fund, which was recently made available to the former Dell workers in Limerick. The delegation aims to get a better insight into the impact of the Fund and to get first-hand information about practical issues such as application procedures, the manner in which the funds compliment co-financing by other national/EU funds and levels of satisfaction from the different parties involved.

The Chairperson of the Delegation, French MEP Elisabeth Morin-Chartier, who will draft the European Parliament's position on the 'financing and functioning' of the Fund, said that 'the European Globalisation Fund is an instrument targeting workers. We must improve its efficiency, speed up the delivery of aid and provide the fund with its own resources.'

The official delegation will include Independent MEP, Marian Harkin, Labour Party MEP Proinsias De Rossa, Socialist Party MEP, Joe Higgins and Dutch MEP Marije Cornelissen. Other Irish MEPs, including Labour Party MEP Alan Kelly and Fine Gael MEP Seán Kelly, will also participate in some of the meetings (please see attached programme).

On Thursday, 3 June, the delegation will meet with representatives of IBEC and ISME. They will meet with David Begg and Jack O'Connor of ICTU and with the members of the Oireachtas Joint Employment Committee. In the afternoon, they will meet with representatives of the Department of Education and FÁS and with representatives from the ESRI and from NESC.

On Friday, 4 June, the delegation will be in Limerick, where it will meet with representatives of the Dell Redundant Workers Association and Equal Rights for Non-Union Workers. They will also meet with the Midwest Regional Authority and with Shannon Development.

Notes:
1. In November 2009, the European Parliament approved the payment of €14.8 million from the European Globalisation Fund to Ireland's Midwest region for the 2840 workers who were affected by Dell's decision to relocate its operations to China and other Asian countries.

2. The European Parliament's Budgetary Committee is expected to approve an application for assistance to 598 workers in the South East Region of Ireland affected by Waterford Crystal's closure. An application for assistance to workers affected by SR Technics's move from Dublin is also under consideration.

3. The European Globalisation Adjustment Fund has been in operation since 2007. In May 2009, the European Parliament voted to change the rules, to make the aid available to a larger group of people having lost their jobs. In practice, this meant lowering the eligibility threshold from 1000 to 500 redundancies and widening the scope to include job losses due to the financial crisis. The number of applications from Member States has since escalated - from 5 in 2008 to 29 in 2009.

Measures financed by the fund include:
· assistance in seeking a job, occupational guidance, tailor-made training and re-training including ICT skills and certification of experience acquired, outsourcing of assistance and entrepreneurship promotion or aid for self-employment;

· special time-limited measures, such as job seekers allowances, mobility allowances or allowances to individuals participating in lifelong learning and training activities;

· measures to stimulate in particular disadvantaged or older workers, to remain in or return to the labour market.

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