Category: Lone Parents

Government throws a few measly crumbs while giant corporations and NAMA developers are the real winners

budget speech - CopyIn a statement, Richard Boyd Barrett TD, for the People Before Profit Alliance has described today’s budget as a bag of “pre-election tricks” and “crumbs” that will “do nothing to stem the dire crises in housing and hospitals” and which “utterly fails to address the huge growth in inequality and unfairness that has resulted from seven years of austerity and regressive measures such as property and water taxes”.

Deputy Boyd Barrett said, the very small additional funding for social housing and the health service were “totally inadequate and tokenistic and would guarantee that the crisis in housing and in our hospitals would be worse again in a year’s time”.

Deputy Boyd Barrett described it as “disgraceful” that jobseekers, lone parents and carers were to see no increase in their basic weekly payments.  He said it was “particularly shameful” that jobseekers under 26 were to see no increase on their half rate payment.

Deputy Boyd Barrett said “the real winners are the biggest corporations who are to be given a new tax break worth billions in the form of the new ‘knowledge box’ 6.25% corporate tax rate”, and private developers who are to be assisted by NAMA to profit from the current housing crisis.”

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spark june 10

Reverse Lone Parent Cuts- No to Child Poverty

Protest- Wed 10th June at 3.30pm, Dail Eireann Gates

spark june 10

Click on above image to enlarge

rbb housingIn a statement this morning People Before Profit TD, Richard Boyd Barrett announced a Right 2 Housing conference on Saturday in The Academy Plaza Hotel (Cathal Brugha Street) from 10.30 – 4.00.

The conference will bring together long time housing campaigners including Peter Mc Verry, Eileen Short (Defend Council Housing, East London), Mick O Reilly (Housing Action Campaign 1970’s and Louise Bayliss (SPARK).  These campaigners will be joined by Dr Andrew McLaren from the Centre from Urban and Regional Studies in Trinity College and many of those directly affected by the Housing Crisis.

There are currently 100,000 families on the Local Authority waiting lists.  Rents are increasing at an average rate of nearly 10% in Dublin which is forcing many low paid families into homeless services.  The government’s Housing Strategy 2020 promised to deliver 15,800 units in 2015 – but 13,000 of these are a continuation of the state renting from private landlords.  1000 are existing houses and only 1400 will be actual new council houses.

Fr Peter Mc Verry said: “The new homeless are those who can no longer afford to pay the rising rents demanded and those who are losing their homes through reposssession. They have never been homeless before and never thought they would ever become homeless. the experiene of homelessness is degrading and destroying their lives as it has done for so many other homeless people before them.”

Mick O Reilly (Housing Action Campaign 1970’s) said: “I feel very sad that today in 21st century we are being forced to organise to fight for public housing. In the 1970’s the Housing Action Campaign won a victory along with others in forcing the Government to commit to building public housing. Now we find ourselves having to do this all over again but shockingly, this time round the crisis is even worse. It is vital that we come together to put pressure on the state to take this crisis seriously and and urgently build housing to cater for the 100,000 on the waiting list and those that are homeless.

Dr Andrew McLaren  (Centre for urban & Regional Studies TCD) said: “Any predominantly market-based system primarily serves the interests of those with money to pay for it and, of course, those involved in its private-sector supply, who use the system as a vehicle for capital accumulation. Housing is no exception. The ‘housing crisis’ is a reflection of inequalities in the distribution of income and wealth, as is the case the affordability crisis (for some) in accessing health services, education or access to the law.”

Louise Bayliss Single Parents Acting for the Rights of Our Kids (SPARK) said, “The lack of affordable housing, coupled with high childcare costs, has led one parent families being trapped in a social welfare cycle of deprivation and intergenerational poverty.  Affordable housing is essential to ensure the economic recovery is felt by all sectors of society and to prevent a further housing price bubble.”

Richard Boyd Barrett TD said:  “I would encourage everyone who is concerned about housing to come to our conference.  There is not only a crisis in the country – it is a national emergency.  Hundreds of thousands of people are suffering as a result of this government’s policy of privatising housing through all their rental schemes.  Their Housing Strategy 2020 is not only hopelessly inadequate, it is a total mirage.  Minister Kelly announced €3.8 billion for housing last October and absolutely nothing has changed for those waiting for housing or facing eviction. We urgently need a campaign along the lines of the Right2Water campaign that can put thousands of people on the streets to demand housing, rent controls and an end to evictions.”

19303_455644964588864_4130372193060306897_n timetable

Government forced to reverse cuts to lone parents, but must do more.

Poor are getting poorer and rich are getting richer under current government – this is why public protest is escalating, says People Before profit TD

Richard Boyd Barrett TD, People Before Profit Alliance will table a motion in Dail Eireann this evening on reducing poverty and inequality. The motion can be read here: PMB Deprivation Feb 2015

rbb pmb press conferenceAt a press conference today, People Before Profit TD and member of the steering group of the Right2 Water campaign announced details of a motion which be debated in the Dail this week, which calls for the abolition of water and property charges and other regressive taxes and cuts to deal with rising poverty and deprivation.

Deputy Boyd Barrett was joined at the press conference by John Douglas (General Secretary of Mandate), Louise Bayliss (Spark), & Ruth Coppinger TD, (Socialist Party).
The motion is co-signed by: Clare Daly, Paul Murphy, Ruth Coppinger, Joan Collins, John Halligan, Mick Wallace, Maureen O Sullivan, Tom Fleming & Thomas Pringle.

The Dail motion authored by Deputy Boyd Barrett catalogues the dramatic rise of poverty and deprivation across a number of groups in Irish society, including, lone-parents, children, the elderly, low-paid workers and other vulnerable groups, and outlines how this situation has worsened under the Fine Gael/Labour government.

The motion further outlines how the recent increases in poverty, deprivation and homelessness for a huge cohort of citizens have taken place at the same time that that household wealth and corporate profits in the country as a whole have increased, but that this increased wealth remains concentrated in the hands of the very wealthiest in Irish society.

The motion calls for the abolition or reversal of recent budgetary measures that have been regressive and contributed to growing poverty and inequality, calling on the government to replace these measures with taxes focused on the top income earners, wealth and profits.
Specifically, the motion calls for: the abolition of water charges, property taxes and the USC for those earning less than the average industrial wage. It further calls for the reversal of cuts affecting lone parents, cuts in child benefit, cuts in Job Seekers Allowance for those under 26, the household benefits package, fuel and telephone allowance, rent allowance, respite care grant and prescription charges. It also calls for an emergency programme of council house construction.

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Boyd Barrett speaks on the one parent family payment