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Taoiseach fails to address ESRI findings putting Ireland top on persistent deprivation – Brady

31 January, 2018 - by John Brady TD


Sinn Féin spokesperson for Employment Affairs & Social Protection John Brady TD has criticised an Taoiseach Leo Varadkar for ignoring the stark data published by the ESRI in relation to persistent deprivation levels among lone parents and working age adults with a disability.

This morning, the ESRI published a major study into deprivation in 11 EU countries between 2004 and 2015 showing a “significant gap” in the rate of deprivation experienced by vulnerable adults in Ireland than others.

After raising the report with the Taoiseach during Leaders’ Questions today, Teachta Brady said:

“In Ireland, the persistent deprivation rate is 26% higher among lone parents and 14% higher for adults with a disability than for others. The persistent deprivation gap between vulnerable adults and other adults has increased significantly over time in Ireland.

“We now have an Indecon report, CSO Survey on Income & Living Conditions figures and this ESRI report telling us the same thing – lone parent families are experiencing severe deprivation and poverty, far greater than that experienced in two parent families.

“The Taoiseach’s reply focused on the importance of finding employment and went on to list the social welfare supports that are in place to assist lone parents and people with Disabilities despite the fact that the ESRI report highlighted major barriers to work for these cohorts of people in Ireland and went on to say that our social welfare system is not addressing deprivation and poverty.

“Indeed, the lead researcher in the report has said that interventions are particularly urgent in Ireland, as the data show that the deprivation gap is most pronounced here.

“The Taoiseach and his party have been in Government since 2011 and they have yet to address deprivation and poverty rates among the most vulnerable in society.

“The Taoiseach has agreed to read Sinn Féin’s proposals on establishing a Child Maintenance Service which has been proven to play a role in lifting children out of poverty. This is one specific step this Government can take to make a dent in our poverty rates.” 

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