Job seekers becoming desperate

Flood of applicants vie for jobs created by government employment package

Female students are predominant on five out of the six Copenhagen University faculties (photo: iStock)
November 21st, 2012 7:16 pm| by admin
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Employers with jobs available under the recently passed emergency legislation to create 12,500 jobs are getting bombarded by applications, according to the weekly newsletter A4.

A job posting seeking someone to do odd jobs in the kitchen, cafeteria and offices at Lise Hall in Varde generated 130 applications. The head of Lise Hall, Henning Mernø, said he had expected just a handful of applications.

“Of the 130 applicants, 100 are unemployed and about to fall out of the benefit system,” Mernø told A4.

Around 38,000 Danes will lose their unemployment benefit, dagpenge, next year when a reform kicks in that halves the length of time that the unemployed can claim dagpenge to two years. The reform also doubles the length of time they have to be in full-time employment before being entitled to the benefit from six months to a full year.

Recently passed legislation earmarked 115 million kroner of next year’s budget to finance an akutjobpakke, a jobs package designed to tackle the problem by allowing the long-term unemployed to have a first crack at the jobs created in both the public and private sectors, and by paying employers 25,000 kroner per job created specifically from someone who has run out of dagpenge.

Paul Henry Dyrvig, the owner of Solo Rengøring, a cleaning company in Fredericia, said his ad for an opening for cleaning help attracted over 100 applicants.

“I received applications from as far away as Copenhagen, from candidates with advanced educations,” said Dyrvig. “The desperation that the unemployed are feeling right now really hit me.”

Only three out of every ten jobs created by the package are currently in the private sector, according to a survey done by A4. Since the first job available under the new program was advertised on November 4, a total of 589 jobs have come online. Only 179 of those are with private companies.

According to the agreement the government signed with the national employer's association Dansk Arbejdsgiverforening (DA) and other organisations, private employers are expected to supply more than half of the 12,500 jobs scheduled to be created before 1 July 2013. There are, however, no requirements that they do so ,nor any penalties in place should they fall short.

DA chief consultant Jørgen Bang-Petersen said that more private sector jobs are on the way.

“It takes time to get the mechanisms in place, but the balance between public and private jobs should even out by the end of the year,” Bang-Petersen told A4.

(photo: Henrik Stenberg)
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