Wed, Dec 18, 2002 - Page 2 News List

Council blamed for high jobless rate among Aborigines

By Lin Miao-Jung  /  STAFF REPORTER

The Control Yuan yesterday censured the Cabinet-level Council of Aboriginal Affairs for dereliction of duty in not providing proper assistance to the nation's Aborigines and making them suffer from the difficulties of unemployment.

"The council obviously wastes its resources by setting up job-service stations in cities and counties where relatively few Aboriginal people live," a report released by the Control Yuan stated yesterday.

"Also, its training programs provided to that group do not fit their needs and do not sufficiently lower the group's unemployment rate," it added.

The report was announced yesterday by Control Yuan members Lin Ju-liang (林鉅鋃), Lin Jiang-tsai (林將財), Lin Chiou-shan (林秋山) and Huang Wu-tzu (黃武次) who conducted the investigation into the matter.

The four highlighted the problem of high unemployment for Aboriginal groups in Taiwan and used that as the basis for the Control Yuan's censure of the council for its failure to resolve such problems.

According to the report, official statistics show that in May of this year, the Aboriginal unemployment rate reached 8.37 percent compared to 5.02 percent for non-Aboriginal groups.

This year's statistics also show that the nation's Aborigines who are currently looking for work have, on average, been jobless about 65 weeks. Among those Aborigine job hunters, 3 percent of them have been without work for more than 5 years.

The Control Yuan found that the Aboriginal council had set up job service stations for Aborigines in five urban areas including Taipei, Keelung, Taoyuan, Taichung and Kaohsiung.

But most Aborigines do not live in those cities -- they live in Hualien, Taitung and Pingtung Counties; and the highest unemployment rates for Aboriginals are in Keelung City (21.44 percent), Ilan County (20.27 percent) and Hsinchu County (21.44 percent).

"The administrative measures should be service-oriented, but the council obviously did not do it well and wasted the resources of the government," Huang said.

Furthermore, the new report pointed out that even though the council has provided job-training programs every year since 1999, the participation rate in such programs has been as low as 11 percent.

Also, even after obtaining certificates from such programs, only 5 percent of the participants are working in a field related to their studies.

"The council achieves little in terms of promoting job-training programs as well as introducing participants to proper positions," the report said.

The report concluded that the council should take at least partial responsibility for the fact that the unemployment rate among Aborigines remains high.

The council has two months to report to the Control Yuan with its proposed measures for improving its performance.

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