A county breakdown of numbers on the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) shows that 603 of the 2,723 recipients of the payment in Co Leitrim (as of July 5) were between 18 and 25 years old, equating to 22% of the total.
The National Youth Council of Ireland (NYCI) - which represents organisations working with over 380,000 young people nationwide - revealed the figures and is calling on the Government to bring forward a package of measures to support young jobseekers.
“As a society and an economy, we cannot afford to make the mistakes of the past, where young people were left to linger on the dole queues for years on end and the Governmental response was slow and inadequate,” the NYCI stated.
Figures for neighbouring counties showed Sligo and Donegal on 24%, Roscommon on 21% and Longford and Cavan each on 19%. The national average is 22%.