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Ó Snodaigh calls for return of Christmas bonus social welfare payment

30 October, 2010 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Sinn Féin Social Protection Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has called for the re-introduction of the Christmas bonus social welfare payment.

Speaking at a meeting of party activists and elected reps in Dublin today Deputy Ó Snodaigh said his party’s pre-budget submission, to be launched on Monday, will set out revenue raising proposals to fund all current social welfare rates and to re-introduce the Christmas bonus.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:

“Unlike the other parties Sinn Féin’s pre-budget submission is designed to protect the most vulnerable in our society while stimulating the economy and reducing the budget deficit.

“By ending wastages in public spending, eliminating tax loopholes and introducing new tax measures aimed at those who can afford to pay, Sinn Féin has identified the funding required to fund all current social welfare rates and to re-introduce the Christmas bonus payment.

“The withdrawal of the Christmas bonus payment last year was a cruel measure which caused much heartache and stress.  It forced many families into the hands of unscrupulous money lenders and it will do so again this year unless the payment is re-introduced.

“Sinn Féin challenges the claim from the other political parties that there must be cutbacks in social welfare and that everybody must share in the pain.  The fact is that these parties are targeting low and middle income earners rather than the wealth that is still in this state.

“We mustn’t lose sight of the fact that social welfare is an important economic stimulus that helps to retain and create jobs particularly at Christmas time.

“The true measure of any society is in how it treats its most vulnerable citizens.  In the current economic crisis Sinn Féin seeks to protect the most vulnerable.” ENDS

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