Findings of ESRI report on joblessness and poverty "shocking"

Inevitable that situation will worsen unless government changes course says Finnegan

Michael Finnegan, president of the Workers Party has described the findings in the Work and Poverty in Ireland research by the ESRI as both truly shocking and a wake-up call to government in this country.


“The figures contained in this ESRI” said Mr Finnegan “show the pervasiveness of joblessness in the Irish economy, and the undeniable link between that joblessness and real poverty. The fact that the percentage in Ireland is now double the average across the EU will probably come as a shock to some politicians and commentators and the general public but will be no surprise to any community or political activist meeting these families and individuals on a daily basis.


“With 22% of adults living in jobless households, and almost 25% of children living in similar circumstances real questions must be asked about government economic and social policy both presently and indeed over the last decade. We can only imagine just how much worse those figures would be without the outlet of mass emigration which is stalking this country for the last five years.”


“Sadly, the revelation in the research that adults with disabilities and/or those failed by our education system only reinforces previous trends. It is merely a further indication that in this country the most vulnerable in society are the most victimised”.


“It is inevitable” continued Mr Finnegan “that unless the government radically alters its economic course these figures will continue to worsen. The brutal budgetary assault over several years on adult and further education; on child support; on supports for people with disabilities; on training opportunities within CE schemes are all contributing to this terrible downward spiral into long-term joblessness and poverty”.


“Once again” concluded Mr Finnegan “we call on this government to reverse their slash and burn policy of retrenchment and instead pursue a policy of growth, job creation, and poverty elimination”.


Issued 11th December 2012

Peace, Work, Democracy & Class Politics