Deputy Noel Coonan has warmly welcomed the establishment of SOLAS, a new authority which will provide further education and training for jobseekers and other learners living in North Tipperary and South Offaly.
The local Fine Gael TD said FAS will be dissolved and the new authority will shine a light on many jobseekers’ dismal situations by helping people acquire new skills to compete in our current economic climate when jobs are less plentiful.
Deputy Coonan said: “I welcome the announced changes because, in this post Celtic tiger era, re-training and upskilling are more important than ever and it’s vital every effort is made to create meaningful employment opportunities. The Fine Gael-led Government is prioritising the further education of our people by establishing a SOLAS Implementation Group to develop an Action Plan and report progress to the Cabinet Committee on Economic Recovery and Jobs.”
“I’m pleased to see that FAS will be re-created and brought into the modern era so we can afford those who are desperately seeking work the opportunity to further their education and enter what has become a very competitive Labour Market.
“I hope those changes stand the test of time and offer hope to employees, employers and those on the Live Register in North Tipperary and South Offaly,” continued Deputy Coonan.
In cooperation with the Department of Social Protection’s new National Employment and Entitlements Service, as part of the National Employment Action Plan, those on the Live Register in North Tipperary and South Offaly will, for the first time, be systematically referred to further education programmes.
Deputy Coonan complimented all those working in FAS and VEC offices in North Tipperary and South Offaly area who will fall under the umbrella of the new authority. Participants on current FÁS and further education courses will not be affected by the establishment of SOLAS and will continue their courses under the new authority.