Monday 21 August 2017

Irish politicians are not taking poverty levels seriously, says SVP

Kieran Stafford, the new president of the St Vincent de Paul. Picture: Andy Jay
Kieran Stafford, the new president of the St Vincent de Paul. Picture: Andy Jay
Mark O'Regan

Mark O'Regan

Politicians are failing to take growing poverty levels seriously, according to Kieran Stafford, the new national president of the Society of St Vincent De Paul (SVP).

The SVP said there had been a 25pc rise in families qualifying for social housing, and a quarter of single-parent families lived in constant poverty. Mr Stafford was speaking at the SVP's pre-budget submission for Budget 2018.

The Government last week announced the Back to School Clothing and Footwear Allowance would increase this year from €100 to €125 for children under 12 and from €200 to €250 for children 12 and over.

However, these increases still leave the rate at 30pc below the 2011 allowances. Direct Provision rates will also increase from August. The rate for children will rise from €15.60 to €21.60 per week and for adults from €19.10 to €21.60 per week.

"While there is still some way to go to reach the levels sought by SVP, the increases are moving in the right direction - and we hope Budget 2018 will bring further increases to the levels we have sought," said Mr Stafford.

Sunday Independent

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