Dáil Éireann - Volume 435 - 16 November, 1993

Written Answers. - FÁS Training Schemes.

165. Mr. Kenneally asked the Minister for Enterprise and Employment the reason a married woman with children whose husband is unemployed loses half of her child-benefit and the dependant's spouse benefit if she goes on a FÁS training course, often meaning the family is in a worse position while the wife is pursuing a training course, whereas the spouse of an employed person taking exactly the same training can do so without any negative income impact on the financial circumstances of the family; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

Minister for Enterprise and Employment (Mr. Quinn): Persons participating in FÁS training courses are paid either a basic allowances of £59.20 per week or an amount equivalent to their unemployment compensation if they had been on the live register prior to training.

As such a married woman who had been on the live register prior to training would be paid by FÁS a training allowance equivalent to her unemployment compensation payment. In addition, FÁS pays a training bonus of £10 per week for trainees with dependency status subject to receipt of certified evidence of dependency status from the Department of Social Welfare. In such circumstances, I am not aware that there would be any change to her spouse's unemployment compensation or to the household income. If she had not been on the live register prior to training she would be paid on the basic FÁS training allowance. The fact that she now has an income in her own right would be taken into account by the Department of Social Welfare in determining the level of her spouse's unemployment compensation.

[1593] The Deputy will appreciate that the level of payment of unemployment compensation in either circumstance is a matter for the Minister for Social Welfare.