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MABS Office Required For Roscrea

Deputy Noel Coonan has warmly greeted the long-awaited addition of one temporary member of staff to North Tipperary’s Money Advice and Budgeting Service (MABS).  It was revealed today,  that a total of 19 offices nationwide are to benefit from extra staff to help deal with a backlog of applications for assistance. With a 35% to 40% increase in the number of new clients seen this year by MABS in the constituency, the Fine Gael TD is also outlining the urgent need for an office to be located in Roscrea, Co.Tipperary.

The Deputy explained that North Tipperary has two MABS offices while South Tipperary, a constituency that is smaller and more compact, has a total of three offices.

moneyDeputy Coonan stated:

“While I welcome the extra member of staff allocated to North Tipperary, I believe we need to go a step further and set up a clinic in Roscrea to serve that vast rural midlands area. The area is not serviced by an office in nearby Birr either and Tullamore is the only office in County Offaly. From a strategic point of view, there is a pressing need for an office in Roscrea. MABS staff in the Nenagh and Thurles offices provide an excellent service to people in financial difficulty but their workload has increased phenomenally over the last year. They have been hoping for additional staff for a long time and have now been allocated a part-time money advisor.
However, the Minister for Social and Family Affairs needs to spread the net and establish a Roscrea office. Clients who attend MABS offices in North Tipperary stem from all backgrounds. It’s no longer just those living in disadvantaged circumstances that are looking for financial assistance. Clients can include those who own small businesses, those on social welfare and those in trouble with mortgage repayments, hire purchase on cars or credit cards”.

Almost 10,000 new clients were assisted by MABS staff, nationally, in the first six months of this year, with an average debt of over €15,000. Those seeking help from MABS owe a total of almost €150 million and nearly two thirds of this is owed to banks and other financial institutions. People are now desperate for help with their finances as unemployment reaches 12% and the Government provides no long-term national strategy to create and protect jobs.
At the moment North Tipperary has two full-time money advisers and two part time administrators.

MABS aids people who are experiencing financial difficulties, having problems paying off debts and in need of advice on best money management.

Meanwhile, the number of people signing on the Live Register in County Tipperary has risen by over 7,000 in the last 12 months. Latest figures from the Central Statistics Office shows that both Nenagh and Thurles experienced an increase of 174 in the last month while Clonmel recorded an increase of 170.

MABS operate a helpline (1890-283438) from Monday to Friday.

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