Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Social Protection Deputy Willie O’Dea has said that the Government is continuing to fail low income families, and in particular lone parent families.

Deputy O’Dea was commenting as the latest data from the Survey on Income and Living Conditions (SILC) showed that the rate of consistent poverty among lone parent households actually increased between 2014 and 2015.

“Fine Gael must be unique in their ability to preside over a society where lone parent consistent poverty increases, while at the very same time claim that there is a recovery taking place.

“The latest SILC data reveals that poverty rates have remained broadly static and underscores the abject failure of the Government to spread the recovery fairly across all sectors of society.

Consistent poverty barely declined from 8.8% in 2014 to 8.7% in 2015, while the at-risk of poverty rate was 17.2% in 2014 compared to 16.9% in 2015.

“How is it acceptable that 1 in 12 of our citizens lives in consistent poverty? Why is there no red light flashing in the Department about this?

“These figures demonstrate that a two-tier recovery was implemented by Fine Gael while in government. Low income families have received almost nothing from Fine Gael’s six years of power, and have been left behind.

“Shockingly the deprivation rates for lone income families remains too high at 58%. How does Minister Varadkar think that this is acceptable?

“These statistics reveal how premature and out of touch Fine Gael’s general election slogan ‘Keep the Recovery Going’ was. These statistics should act as a wakeup call to the Government and Minister Varadkar in particular,” concluded O’Dea.