Dedicated, Ambitious Action Plan needed to address rising rate of child poverty
Eurochild Member Child Rights Alliance from Ireland launches its child poverty monitor 2023.
The report analyses the state of play for children and young people, tracking Irish Government progress and action to address child poverty, and showcases best practice solutions in local communities.
Key findings of the Child Poverty Monitor:
- Food - Food Poverty is one area where the Government has stepped up to its responsibility to ensure no child goes to school hungry. In Budget 2024 we need to see the rates increase to ensure that the quality of the food can be improved in the face of rising costs.
- Early Years - Investing in early years is the most effective approach the Government can take to break the cycle of poverty. When infants and small children are forced to live in poverty it has serious implications for the rest of their lives.
- Income - For children and families experiencing poverty, the recent incremental increase to social welfare payments was not enough to help keep them afloat with rapid rises elsewhere due to the cost-of-living crisis. This leaves families with impossible decisions between eating or heating, with many parents reporting going without in order to ensure their children have dinner that night or lights on to study for exams. Income measures are not enough alone to turn the dial on poverty, but they cannot be ignored in Budget 2024.
- Housing - We are living through the worst housing and homelessness crisis modern Ireland has faced. Numbers continue to meet and exceed record figures every month. The need to build affordable and accessible housing remains but the Government must now consider the detrimental impact this crisis is having on young children and put the necessary supports in place to attempt to minimise the long-lasting effects.