Thursday 22 February 2018

Overhaul of our €22bn welfare system must be done by design

The best poverty reduction scheme in the world is a job

You walk into a room lit by fluorescents. A man sits you at the table and hands you a pencil and some paper. "Redesign Ireland's social protection system, please. Lunch is at one."

Once your hyperventilation passes, you'll want to know the 'edges' of the design brief. Ireland spends well over €22bn on social protection measures. Almost one-third of everything the Government spends goes into this area. The unemployment rate is 13.7pc, which represents around 292,000 people. But social protection is not just social welfare payments.

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