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Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Gary Gannon: I do not think it is me next.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Jennifer Murnane O'Connor: Deputy Christopher O'Sullivan is next.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Catherine Connolly: Ach níl sé anseo.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Dara Calleary: I am taking No. 77.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Jennifer Murnane O'Connor: Deputy Calleary is taking No. 77 and I am taking No. 78.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Catherine Connolly: I am just reading what I have in front of me and I have received no notice of substitutions.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Jennifer Murnane O'Connor: I have got word.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Dara Calleary: It has all been done. We have got the confirmation back from-----

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Catherine Connolly: I will take Deputy Gannon. Perhaps we can check the order but I had no notice of that. There is no problem if the Deputies have done it but there is nothing before me.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Heather Humphreys: We will take Deputy Gannon's question in the meantime.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Gary Gannon: My question is brief. I want to ask the Minister the date she expects to publish a child maintenance review group report and if she will make a statement on the matter.

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Heather Humphreys: In line with the programme for Government commitment, the Government established a child maintenance review group to examine certain issues in relation to child maintenance in Ireland. The group's terms of reference were to consider and make recommendations on the following: the current treatment of child maintenance payments in my Department; the current provisions regarding liable...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Gary Gannon: I thank the Minister and I welcome getting some degree of insight to the report. In her next response I ask the Minister to give an estimated date for publication of the report. Would it be before summer, for example? It would be helpful if we had some degree of knowledge of the timeline. We both agree that it is abhorrent that lone parents and their children continue to be one of the...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Departmental Reports (17 May 2022)

Heather Humphreys: As I said, the report runs to a few hundred pages and the chairperson of the group was Judge Catherine Murphy. A huge amount of work was put in, they asked for extra time so that it could be given the attention it deserved and I want to thank the group for the work they put in. There are a lot of issues here; it is not just social protection but there are other issues as well that cross...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Cost of Living Issues (17 May 2022)

Cost of Living Issues

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Cost of Living Issues (17 May 2022)

Paul Murphy: 75. To ask the Minister for Employment Affairs and Social Protection if she will increase social welfare rates in line with increases in the cost of living; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [24512/22]

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Cost of Living Issues (17 May 2022)

Paul Murphy: In the most recent budget the Minister increased social welfare rates by a measly 2.5%. Over the past year we have seen inflation at 7% or more. Does the Minister intend to immediately increase social welfare rates to at least keep pace with the spiralling cost of living so that those on low fixed incomes are not compelled to fall deeper and deeper into poverty?

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Cost of Living Issues (17 May 2022)

Heather Humphreys: On an ongoing basis, and as part of the normal budgetary cycle, my Department actively monitors key economic indicators and also takes account of research data, including data on the minimum essential standard of living from the Vincentian Partnership for Social Justice. The social impact of budget measures is also assessed using the SWITCH model developed by the ESRI. It is through this...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Cost of Living Issues (17 May 2022)

Paul Murphy: The Government likes to talk a lot about the cost of living being caused by factors outside its control but let us look at the factors that are in the Government's control. Social protection is set at poverty levels. That was the case before the huge inflation we are seeing but it is getting worse. The crumbs being offered to people are not good enough. When their bills are soaring by...

Ceisteanna Eile - Other Questions: Cost of Living Issues (17 May 2022)

Heather Humphreys: Data from SILC in 2021 are the official poverty data for Ireland. The survey was undertaken in 2021 and refers to 2020 income. I will give the Deputy a few figures from it. The rate of consistent poverty reduced from 4.7% in 2020 to 4% in 2021. The number of people at-risk of poverty reduced from 13.2% to 11.6%. The deprivation rate reduced from 14.3% to 13.8% in 2021. Social transfers...

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