Analysis & Comment

Successive Governments have continued to look to private entities to deliver public services.  This has given rise to a regulatory emphasis on safeguarding competition rather than protecting the consumer, leaving households dependent on essential services at the mercy of market forces.   The recommendations in a recent OECD report provide salutary advice.

In the most recent, and high-profile, mortgage sale, Permanent TSB this week announced its intention to sell 14,000 non-performing mortgage loans.  Some commentators have suggested that, instead of selling these loans, that individual borrowers be allowed to ‘make a deal’ with the lender to buy the loan at the intended sale price.  However, this solution is too simplistic. 

Broadband timetable
Broadband Plan Timetable

The provision of quality Broadband to all citizens has been an objective of many Governments since 2008.  This graphic illustrates some of the stages to date.  Following the withdrawal of two of the three bidders for the licence to provide this essential service, delivery seems even further away.

The Daft.ie Rental Report released today showed that private rents continue to rise in Ireland, with average rent nationally now standing at €1,227 and reaching a high of €1,995 in South County Dublin.  There were 85,799 households (235,947 people) on the social housing waiting list in June 2017, a decrease of 6% from September 2016, however over half of that decrease is attributable to transfers from Rent Supple

As part of Social Justice Ireland's recent submission to the Low Pay Commission, we advocated for the introduction of Refundable Tax Credits as a means to tackle the issue of Low Pay in the Irish economy.

A new study of 11 EU countries shows that Ireland has a significant and increasing gap in deprivation between vulnerable adults and other adults in society. The research, from the Economic and Social Research Institute, (published 31 January 2018), shows there is a significant and widening gap in the rate of persistent deprivation experienced by vulnerable adults, including lone parents and adults with a disability, and the rate experienced by other adults. Of the 11 EU countries studied, Ireland’s gap was the largest and increased the most during the study’s time frame of 2004-2015.

Current welfare systems were not designed to adapt to the challenges presented by automation and globalisation and are not fit for purpose. That's the view of a new paper from the Adam Smith Institute in the UK published to coincide with the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos this week. The institute argues that governments should look to Universal Basic Income (UBI) experiments around the world as they seek to address the risks posed by large-scale changes to the labour market while retaining the benefits of trade and technological progress.

While the economy is doing well, it is crucial that policy-makers realise that many on lower incomes are not benefiting as they should. Almost 800,000 people in Ireland are living in poverty, a quarter of a million of whom are children. 1 million people in Ireland are experiencing deprivation. 105,000 people are working in a job with income so low they are living in poverty. Social Justice Ireland has a plan to fix this, and to build a fairer society for all.

The CSO Survey on Income and Living Conditions has been published. It shows that despite some small improvements in poverty and deprivation rates, more than 790,000 people are living in poverty in Ireland, of which over 250,000 are children. These figures are unacceptable in a rich, developed country like Ireland.

31 per cent of working-age people with a disability are employed, which is less than half the rate of those without a disability, according to Social Justice Ireland’s latest Quarterly Employment Monitor.

Recent publications

Ireland is performing in the bottom half of 15 similar European countries on a range of important UN backed indicators covering Economy, Environment and Society. Measuring Progress: Economy, Society and Environment in Ireland puts Ireland’s overall ranking in the Sustainable Progress Index at 11th out of our peer countries in the EU 15.

Social Justice Ireland marks UN World Day of Social Justice each year with a seminar looking at Ireland's progress to date in meeting our responsibilities under the Global Goals. You can view video footage of the seminar here.

Social Justice Ireland's Quarterly Employment Monitor, published December 2017, may be accessed here.

Social Justice Ireland were honoured to have President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins deliver the key note address at our 30th Annual Social Policy Conference. Click here to watch the video of his presentation, or download his paper, entitled On The Discourse That We Need.

This year's conference featured an excellent and diverse line-up of speakers from Spain, Italy, Germany, the USA, and Ireland. The key note address was delivered by President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins. Click in to download papers from the conference, watch the presentations, see our handy summary graphics, or download the entire conference booklet for free.

Recent podcasts/videos

Social Justice Ireland marks UN World Day of Social Justice each year with a seminar looking at Ireland's progress to date in meeting our responsibilities under the Global Goals. You can view video footage of the seminar here.

Social Justice Ireland were honoured to have President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins deliver the key note address at our 30th Annual Social Policy Conference. Click here to watch the video of his presentation, or download his paper, entitled On The Discourse That We Need.

This year's conference featured an excellent and diverse line-up of speakers from Spain, Italy, Germany, the USA, and Ireland. The key note address was delivered by President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins. Click in to download papers from the conference, watch the presentations, see our handy summary graphics, or download the entire conference booklet for free.

Watch Social Justice Ireland's Budget Response Seminar from the morning after Budget 2018 was announced, and download our Analysis and Critique of Budget 2018, which provides a comprehensive anaylsis including in areas such as taxation, social protection, health, education, employment, distributional impact, housing and ODA.

Social Justice Ireland’s 2016 Social Policy Conference centred around the topic of basic income in Ireland and throughout Europe. It was titled Basic Income: Radical Utopia or Practical Solution? and explored current thinking about basic income in both the global and Irish contexts. This page draws together, in one handy space, all the associated literature and video material from the day.