Social Protection Minister Heather Humphreys has ruled out a €20 increase in social welfare payments in Budget 2023.
She said today that an agreement around social welfare provisions in the Budget on Tuesday has not yet been agreed and talks are ongoing.
Speaking on RTÉ’s This Week, Minister Humphreys said a strong package of measures has been put in place to alleviate the stress people are facing with the rising cost of living.
However, she said a €20 increase to social welfare payments, which Social Justice Ireland has advocated for, would be “very ambitious”.
Minister Humphreys added that a €20 increase would cost €1.5bn and leave no money left for other measures.
"What we are going to do is put together a strong package of measures to alleviate the pressure people are facing in terms of the cost of living,” she said.
"And yes, we want to put money back into their pockets and there is a number of different areas that I’m looking at and there will be an across-the-board increase in the social welfare payment but just to say that it’s expensive.
"For example, a euro increase in social welfare payment would cost €75m, a €10 increase would cost €750m and a €20 increase would cost over €1.5bn.
"So, there’s a number of things that we are looking at.”
Minister Humprey’s said Social Justice Ireland makes a “strong case” but added: "No matter what we do in this Budget it’ll never go far enough and we will never be able to meet all the different demands, but I want to look at targeted measures, such as the fuel allowance.”