Jennifer Whitmore TD

Figures published today show that the Government is failing to get to grips with rising child poverty levels, according to Social Democrats TD Jennifer Whitmore.

Deputy Whitmore, who is the party’s spokesperson on children, said:

“The 2023 State of the Nation’s Children (SONC) report paints a bleak picture of child poverty in Ireland and shows that the numbers are going in the wrong direction.

“There are more than 1.2 million children living in Ireland today. However, the report reveals that 15.2 per cent of them were considered to be at risk of poverty last year – up from 13.6 per cent in 2021.

“The figure for children experiencing consistent poverty was 7.5 per cent, up from 5.2 per cent in 2021.

“The Taoiseach has previously stated that he wants Ireland to be the best country in Europe to be a child. The figures published today are completely at odds with this aspiration.

“The Government’s Child Poverty Unit must use the data contained in the SONC report and take strategic action to improve the lives of vulnerable children and families.

“Poverty is corrosive and can prevent children from accessing future educational, social and employment opportunities.

“No country with a strong economy like Ireland’s can justify rising child poverty levels.”

January 25, 2024

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