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Social Exclusion

Some Reflections on Inequality in Ireland’ is part of Social Justice Ireland’s Policy Research Series. It reflects on the reality of equality and the myths that enable its persistence.  It looks at inequality in economics and the ideologies in public policy that have produced the present unequal situation across the world. 

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.

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.

Social Justice Ireland's Quarterly Employment Monitor, published December 2017, may be accessed here. It deals with the issues of disability in the labour force, as well as emerging trends in precarious work and low pay.

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.

Since the onset of the recession the number of people in poverty in Ireland has increased by more than 100,000.   Today there are more than 750,000 people living in poverty in Ireland; this is a major concern.  More than 57 per cent of those in poverty are not connected to the labour market; they are people who are retired, students, people in caring roles or people who are ill or people with a disability.

Social Justice Ireland's policy briefing on poverty, deprivation and inequality.
 

There are 1.3 million people experiencing deprivation in Ireland, an increase of 215,000 since this Government came to office in 2011.  The numbers experiencing deprivation have almost doubled since the crash of 2008.

Budget 2016 was the fifth regressive Budget in a row. While it was not as regressive as in previous years and contained some gain for everyone, there was much more for the better off and far less for poor and vulnerable people. 

While single unemployed people will gain €95 a year, single people earning €75,000 will gain almost ten times as much i.e. €902.  In the case of couples, the unemployed will gain €157 a year while a couple with two earners on €125,000 a year will gain nine times as much i.e. an extra €1,408 a year.

A new Caritas Europa study, reveals disturbing levels of poverty and deprivation in the five EU countries worst hit by the economic crisis; Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal and Spain.  It also finds that the prioritisation by the EU and its Member States of economic policies at the expense of social policies during the current crisis is having a devastating impact on people - especially in the five countrie

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