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Job Initiative scheme


The Job Initiative Scheme is a programme providing full-time employment for people 35 years of age or over who have been unemployed for 5 years or more. Since November 2004, there has been no further recruitment onto the Scheme. Instead, you are invited to consider applying for available Community Employment vacancies. The following information therefore only applies to those currently employed under the Job Initiative Scheme.

In order to qualify, you must have been in receipt of an appropriate social welfare payment over that 5-year period. The aim of the Job Initiative programme is to assist long-term unemployed persons to prepare for work opportunities in the open labour market. The programme does this by providing participants with work experience, training and development opportunities. The same employment conditions apply to the Scheme as in other jobs. For example, you have the same employment rights and protections regarding annual leave, sick leave, maternity leave, grievance or disciplinary procedures and your income is taxable.


As recruitment to the Job Initiative Scheme finished in November 2004, the following information applies only to those currently employed under the Scheme.

In order to participate in the Job Initiative Scheme you must have been over 35 years of age and have been receiving one of the following payments for 5 years or more

You may qualify for Family Income Supplement if you have children. Limited funding is available for training.

Extra benefits

You will keep your medical card for the duration of the scheme.

You will keep your extra benefits provided you continue to satisfy the conditions for these benefits.


You are paid the going rate for the job. The minimum payment to a Job Initiative participant is €416.

How to apply

For further information contact your local employment services office or Intreo centre.
Page edited: 5 March 2015



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Contact Us

If you have a question relating to this topic you can contact the Citizens Information Phone Service on 0761 07 4000 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm) or you can visit your local Citizens Information Centre.