Foxhunt internships are an abuse of JobBridge scheme - John Brady TD
16 June 2016
Sinn Fein TD, John Brady, has cited a foxhunt internship as an example of an abuse of the government’s JobBridge scheme.
Speaking in the Dail on May 25th, the Wicklow TD stated: “When businesses advertise JobBridge internships in which they seek applicants such as fully qualified architects or, as in a more recent one which was for a fox hunting organisation advertising for a position for a first whipper-in, it is clear that the scheme has been abused and continues to be abused.”
In March, ICABS called for the whipper-in internship with a foxhunt in Waterford to be removed from the JobBridge website. According to a description on the site – “the intern will receive formal/informal training in the following hound management, whipping in, etiquette and on completion the intern will have attained skills in whipping in and will be positioned well to take up a position in hunt service as a whipper in and continue their training to take up the role of a professional huntsman.”
Although the listing was removed following complaints, ICABS learned that this did not mean the position had been scrapped. We were told by the Department that “while the advert has been taken down, the company can still fill the internship vacancy provided they continue to meet the Terms & Conditions of the scheme.”
In May, another foxhunt-related internship – this time for a kennel groom in Tipperary – appeared on the JobBridge website. That too was deleted after ICABS complained.
Responding to John Brady TD’s appeal for JobBridge to be scrapped “with immediate effect”, the Minister for Social Protection, Leo Varadkar, said the he plans to “either abolish it altogether or replace it with a more targeted scheme in September”.
Read the full exchange at https://www.kildarestreet.com/debates/?id=2016-05-25a.211
Tell Minister Leo Varadkar and the Department of Social Protection to immediately exclude animal cruelty groups from the JobBridge scheme and to prevent any such groups from benefiting from JobBridge’s eventual replacement.
Email “JobBridge – No More Foxhunting Internships” to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
Phone Leo Varadkar’s office: (01) 704 3000
Leave a comment on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/leovaradkar
Please sign and share the petition
Department of Social Protection – Stop offering foxhunting internships
Tell Leo Varadkar and the Department of Social Protection to immediately exclude animal cruelty groups from its JobBridge scheme.
New Petition - Please Sign/Retweet: Department of Social Protection – Stop offering foxhunting internships https://t.co/ij9DQl5F4U— Ban Blood Sports (@banbloodsports) March 8, 2016
Foxhunt internship gone from JobBridge website
18 May 2016
An internship for a "kennel groom" is gone from the JobBridge website after the Irish Council Against Blood Sports told the Department of Social Protection that the kennel in question is a foxhunt kennel.
The listing for the 9-month taxpayer-funded position stated: "The intern will gain practical experience in feeding horses and hounds, cleaning out stalls where those animals live and exercising and grooming both horses and hounds. The intern will receive formal/informal training in general kennel and stable management. On completion the intern will have attained skills in the area of animal care, which will involve learning about the dietary requirements and daily exercise regimes of both horses and hounds. The intern will also learn basic communication skills working with others as member of a team and basic skills in how a kennel can be run efficiently and cost effectively."
"This kennel is the Tipperary Foxhounds kennel in Fethard," ICABS pointed out in an email sent to both JobBridge and Social Protection Minister, Leo Varadkar. "The JobBridge-subsidised 'kennel groom' will play an integral role in preparing horses and hounds for outings involving the terrorisation and killing of defenceless foxes. We urge you to act today to withdraw this foxhunt-related internship."
Given the appalling animal cruelty involved in foxhunting (foxes are chased to exhaution and ripped apart when caught), it is entirely unacceptable for the Department of Social Protection to be facilitating such groups in filling positions which are integral to the functioning of a hunt.
A majority of Irish people are opposed to foxhunting and want it made illegal (as it already is in England, Scotland and Wales), we told Minister Varadkar.
In response to the ICABS appeal, a JobBridge representative replied to say that "the Department does not comment on individual host organisations or internships" and that the purpose of the JobBridge scheme is to "assist unemployed people to improve their employment prospects by providing them with the opportunity to develop skills and gain some experience in a working environment."
"There are a range of occupations that some people may find objectionable for one reason or another," the statement added. "The Department does not act as an arbiter in these cases, but does, of course, make every effort to ensure that all internships comply with the Terms and Conditions of the scheme and all relevant legislation."
In March, an internship with the Waterford Foxhounds appeared on the JobBridge website. According to that listing, "the intern will receive formal/informal training in the following hound management, whipping in, etiquette and on completion the intern will have attained skills in whipping in and will be positioned well to take up a position in hunt service as a whipper in and continue their training to take up the role of a professional huntsman."
Although the listing was removed following complaints, ICABS learned that this did not mean the position had been scrapped. We were told by the Department that "while the advert has been taken down, the company can still fill the internship vacancy provided they continue to meet the Terms & Conditions of the scheme."
A petition calling on the Department to stop offering foxhunt internships has so far been signed by over 4,000 people.
A job to kill for: Dept of Social Protection offering foxhunt internship
09 March 2016
The Department of Social Protection is shamefully offering an internship with a foxhunt in County Waterford. Not only is the Department's JobBridge division advertising the internship, it is offering to fund it to the tune of €52.50 per week.
Given the appalling and barbaric cruelty involved in foxhunting, it is entirely unacceptable that the Department of Social Protection is facilitating and subsidising a foxhunt.
Many citizens will be astounded and appalled that their hard earned tax euros are going to fund this horrific animal cruelty, which involves hounding a fox for hours across countryside. If the fox is caught overground, it is torn apart by the pack, and if it does manage to go to earth, terriermen will dig it out, using terriers to fight the fox underground, resulting in horrific injuries to both dog and fox.
It is outrageous that the Department of Social Protection is subsidising animal cruelty. We call on the acting Minister for Social Welfare, Joan Burton, to intervene to have Waterford Foxhounds excluded from the JobBridge scheme. By approving the Waterford Foxhounds for the scheme, Social Protection are in effect condoning and promoting the barbaric bloodsport of foxhunting, and encouraging an unemployed person to become immersed in animal cruelty.
According to the description on the JobBridge website: “The intern will gain practical experience in all aspects of venery, hound management, horse management, country preservation and preparation and veterinary care. The intern will receive formal/informal training in the following hound management, whipping in, etiquette. On completion the intern will have attained skills in whipping in and will be positioned well to take up a position in hunt service as a whipper in and continue their training to take up the role of a professional huntsman…Skills Requirements: Appititude [sic] to learn, a passion for hounds and strong horseman skills.”
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