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Social Welfare

The IMF (International Monetary Fund) has published a study in which it recommends that the way to raise Ireland's employment so as to avoid the persistence of the current high unemployment rate is to reduce unemployment payments over time. It believes this should be supported by stricter job search requirements, additonal resources for FAS (to assist these job searches) and a reduction in the minimum wage.

Disillusionment with the current welfare regime in Germany is real and growing. Interestingly, the solution being proposed by a growing bloc of Christian Democrats (Angela Merkel's party and major part of the current German Government Coalition) is that Germany should move to a Basic Income system. The group within the Christian Democrats proposing this move are led by Dieter Althaus, former premier of the German state of Thuringia.

There is no justification for reducing social welfare rates. Research produced by Social Justice Ireland shows that the take-home pay of TDs rose by €848 a WEEK since 1986 while unemployment benefit rates only rose by €135 in the same period. Government ministers’take-home pay rose by more than €1,533 a WEEK in the same period.

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