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Social Welfare

More than 760,000 people are living in poverty in Ireland, of which over 230,000 are children, despite some small improvements in poverty and deprivation rates.  These are the figures released today by the CSO from the annual Survey on Income and Living Conditions. 

Budget 2019 was an opportunity to fix, or begin to fix, many of the unjust policy moves implemented during the financial crisis. Several policy changes were enacted during that time which were arbitrary in nature: unfair, unjustifiable, and purely for the purpose of saving money. Reducing Jobseeker's rates for young people was one of these.

Budget 2019 marks the third Budget of the current Government. We track the cumulative impact of changes to income taxation and welfare over the Government’s three Budgets.

With significant resources available in Budget 2019, it is time to address an unjustifiable discrimination against younger people. The rate of severe deprivation among 18-24 year olds increased twice as fast as it did for the general population between 2007 and 2015. Removing the tiered approach to Jobseekers Allowance would help to reverse this.

Social Justice Ireland’s annual Socio-Economic Review is entitled Social Justice Matters. This book is about charting a course to a better Ireland. At the foundation of that is how we raise taxes and how much tax we raise.

The consultation on the National Action Plan for Social Inclusion 2018 to 2021 has been released by the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection with a closing date of 16th March 2018.  This consultation is open to all, organisations and individuals, and while Social Justice Ireland encourages all to participate, we are concerned that the questions are framed in such a way as to allow Government to abdicate their responsibilities to the most vulnerable.

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 work on developing a Universal Basic Income for Ireland was acknowledged by Noel Whelan in his op-ed article in The Irish Times on September 15, 2017.

Social Justice Ireland’s annual Socio-Economic Review is entitled 'A New Social Contract for a New Century'.  This review argues that Ireland's present social contract is broken and that 2017 is the perfect opportunity to develop a new and radical social contract for Ireland’s second century.

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