Sinn Féin Leader Gerry Adams TD has said that unless ordinary Irish families are given a break in the forthcoming Budget, that the improvement in exchequer figures would be meaningless.
Mr Adams said that despite Government spin, households would be even worse off after the Budget as they face up to €500 million in water charges at the start of next year. He called for the Government to stop the imposition of water charges and to reverse the property tax.
Gerry Adams said:
“I welcome the latest improved exchequer figures which are a direct result of the hard work of Irish workers and businesses. However, unless Irish families see some benefit and are given a break in the forthcoming budget, these figures will be meaningless.
"Despite Government spin and media management around today’s Cabinet meeting and the run-up to the budget, what is clear is that there will be no change of political direction by the Government.
"Fine Gael and Labour remain wedded to a brutal austerity agenda which continues to penalise those on low and middle-incomes and to damage society.
“Government policies have forced hundreds of thousands of our young people to flee abroad in search of a better quality of life. Some 40,000 people left the State in this year up to April.
"Measures such as the Universal Social Charge, water charges and the property tax are making it impossible for many citizens to cope and are forcing them abroad.
“Many other families cannot afford to leave and are existing in desperate circumstances. There is a huge problem now with what are termed the ‘working poor’. The Government has done nothing to alleviate these problems.
“The Government needs to stop the imposition of the unjust and unfair water charges, reverse the property tax and bring forward measures that will deal with the position of low income earners.
“In the coming weeks, Sinn Féin will put forward alternative budget proposals to strengthen a recovery and ensure that ordinary citizens see something in return for all the sacrifices that have been made.”