Minister admits Programme for Government commitment on social welfare rates will not be met
Social Protection Minister Joan Bruton today admitted that she can’t stand over the programme for government commitment to maintain social welfare rates.
The Minister was responding to questions from Sinn Féin Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh at a meeting of Social Protection Sub Committee today.
Speaking afterwards Deputy Ó Snodaigh said:
“The ink was barely dry on the Programme for Government commitment to maintain social welfare rates when Fine Gael and Labour entered an agreement with the EU/IMF to cut spending on social protection.
“When I put the contradictions between the two commitments to her in the Oireachtas sub-committee today the Minister was forced to admit that she could not stand over the government’s commitment to maintain social welfare rates.
“In her defence she claimed that she had inherited the EU/IMF deal however her government was well aware of the contents of the existing deal when they made their public commitment to maintain social welfare rates.
“And her government subsequently signed their own deal with the EU/IMF in which they commit to cut social expenditure.
“Minister Bruton has today confirmed my fear that there will be bleak news ahead for the 1.4 million people in receipt of a weekly social welfare payment.” ENDS