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CSO figures show increase in number of lone parent families 'at risk of poverty' – John Brady TD

19 December, 2017 - by John Brady TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Employment Affairs & Social Protection, John Brady TD, has said that the rate for lone parent families who are 'at risk of poverty' has increased from 36.2% in 2015 to 40.2% in 2016.

Responding to the figures released in the CSO’s Survey on Income and Living Conditions (SILC) for 2016, Teachta Brady said:

“While, the SILC figures show a slight decrease in the deprivation and consistent poverty rates for lone parent families, there has been an increase in the ‘at risk of poverty rate’ of 4%.

"This is compared to an ‘at risk of poverty rate’ of 12% in households headed by two adults, which is a reduction from 14.5% in 2015.

“This increase is alarming and clearly shows a greater need for targeted measures to support lone parents and their children.

“While, the reduction in the consistent poverty rate among lone parent families is to be welcomed, the stark reality remains that 24.6% of lone parent families are living in consistent poverty - meaning they are living in poverty every single day of the week.

“When we compare this to the consistent poverty rate in households where there are two adults, there is a difference of 18.2%.

“SILC 2016 figures also show that the deprivation rate for lone parent families stands at 50.1% compared to 17.8% in households headed by two adults.

“It does not come as news to us that the Government are failing lone parents and their children. We know from the recent INDECON report which examined the impact that changes to the age limit of the One Parent Family Payment, has had on these families.

“This report found that there is an increased probability of being at risk of poverty as a result of the 2012 changes, many lone parents who lost the One Parent Family Payment remained unemployed, or were in low paid or part-time employment.

"The report went on to suggest that further supports, aimed at assisting lone parents to obtain full-time employment or increased hours of work, need to be put in place.

“This Government need to examine these SILC figures along with the INDECON report which was published in October. Clear and targeted actions need to be implemented to ensure that lone parents and their children do not continue to suffer in poverty as a result of Government policy.” 

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