Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Employment Affairs and Social Protection Willie O’Dea says the latest CSO survey on income and living conditions (SILC) reveals that significant sections of society are not benefitting from the economic recovery.

Deputy O’Dea said, “While there are some modest improvements in poverty and deprivation rates, the data recorded an increase in poverty for certain household types. For example, the consistent poverty rate for people who are unemployed rose from 24.1% in 2017 to 27.6% in 2018. Furthermore, this category also recorded an increase in the at risk of poverty rate and also the deprivation rate which rose from 42% to 47.3%.

“Similarly, people who are not are work due an illness or a disability there was an increase in the at risk of poverty rate from 35.4% in 2017 to 47.7% in 2018.

“Children and lone parent households continue to be particularly exposed to poverty and social exclusion and it is clear that significant sections of society are not experiencing any recovery. Approximately 4,000 children are homeless and living in emergency accommodation and hundreds of thousands of people are struggling to make ends meet. This is Fine Gael’s record after almost 9 years in government.

“Minister Regina Doherty’s long-promised roadmap to social inclusion has failed to materialise. We have been without a new action plan for social inclusion since 2017 and the repeated delays in publishing this document is unfortunately just another example of a Fine Gael announcement not being matched by delivery.

“Today’s figures demonstrate that significant work remains to be done to address poverty and deprivation in Ireland”, concluded Deputy O’Dea.