Tackling inequality and discrimination key challenge for Minister Doherty - Brady
Sinn Féin spokesperson for Social Protection John Brady TD has said that incoming Minister Regina Doherty “has a huge job of work on her hands”.
Teachta Brady said:
“I congratulate Minister Doherty on her appointment as Minister for Employment and Social Protection, a portfolio that is being passed on to her with huge flaws and serious anomalies, full of inequalities and full of discrimination.
“Discrimination is rife in social protection whether one looks at the discrimination faced by our young Jobseekers with 18-24 year olds left to survive on €102.70 a week or women being punished for taking time out of work to rear their children when it comes to their State Pension payment.
“Lone parents have been left on the sidelines for far too long – they are denied the same opportunities as the rest of the population be that in education or employment.
"Consistent poverty among children in lone parent families increased under the Taoiseach in his previous role as Minister for Social Protection to 26.2%. This is an unacceptable level of child poverty and it needs to be tackled as a priority in this new administration.
"The privatisation of job activation schemes is something that does not and will not work. JobPath represents everything that is wrong with this and it is Jobseekers who are suffering.
“I note that Minister Doherty’s predecessor’s campaign on social welfare fraud was not listed as a priority for the Department in the Taoiseach’s speech this evening.
"This is welcome and I would call on the incoming Minister to drop this ridiculous campaign immediately.
“I have requested an immediate meeting with Minister Doherty so I can discuss these matters with her in person as soon as possible and I await her response.
“It is impossible to foresee what is to come under this new Minister but if the failed policies of her predecessor are followed, nothing will change.
"Social Protection must be brought back to what it was created to do; protect the most vulnerable in our society. Fairness and equality in social protection must be restored.”