969. Deputy Brendan Ryan asked the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection when the contract to run the JobPath programme by Seetec will cease; and if she will make a statement on the matter. (Question 12566/18 asked on 20 Mar 2018)

Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection (Deputy Regina Doherty): As the Deputy will be aware, JobPath is a service that supports people who are long-term unemployed to secure and sustain full time paid employment in the open labour market. Seetec is one of the two companies (Turas Nua being the other), contracted by my Department to deliver the service.

The contracts comprise two consecutive phases: phase one entails four years of client referrals while phase two entails a ‘run off’ period of two years. Therefore Client referrals will cease in 2019 and this will be followed by a “run-off” period during which time no new referrals to the service will be made (during the run off period Jobseekers already engaged with the service will continue to receive support). The contracts will therefore terminate in 2021.

In addition, as part of the contracts the Department has reserved the right, at its sole discretion, to extend phase one for further periods, of up to a maximum of 24 months.

I hope this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.