Have your say before Saint Patrick’s Day! Let’s make the best Irish anti-poverty plan ever!

On 16th February 2018, the Irish Government launched its public consultation on a new National Action Plan for Social Inclusion 2018-2021. This move follows the commitment included in the Programme for Partnership Government to develop a new Integrated Framework for Social Inclusion, to tackle inequality and poverty.

The former plan quickly named NAPinclusion (National Action Plan for Social Inclusion 2007-2016 and update) identified a wide range of targeted actions and interventions to support the overall objective of achieving the National Social Target for Poverty Reduction (NSTPR). It adopted a life-cycle approach with goals set for each group: children; people of working age; older people and communities.  The focus of the last implementation years of this plan was on modernising the social protection system, improving effectiveness and efficiency of social transfers and strengthening active inclusion policies.

Now the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection is in the early stages of developing the new National Action Plan/Integrated framework and would like to hear views of the civil society (citizens and organisations). The consultation is by Survey Monkey with a deadline of Friday 16th March. A PDF of the Survey questions is available here to assist with the filling in the online survey.

Have your say! Be inspired by the EAPN briefing! And join the ATD Walk As One initiative to make the next plan the best ever!

A few days after the launch of the consultation, EAPN Ireland (member of the European Anti-Poverty Network) published its Poverty Briefing 2018 and proposals for a new Anti-Poverty Strategy.

A Poverty Briefing published today by the European Anti-Poverty Network (EAPN) Ireland has highlighted that if the Government wants to tackle the high levels of poverty in Ireland it needs to take action at the highest level and across all Government departments.

Despite some recent progress the Government is failing in its commitments to tackle poverty, with some groups in society at particular risk. There are currently 394,900 people in consistent poverty in Ireland, including around 141,700 children. Paul Ginnell, the Director of EAPN Ireland stated that “The last social inclusion plan completely failed as the commitment to make it a priority from the top of Government wasn’t there. This time the Government must be serious and the new plan ambitious in its goals and implementation if we are ever to have any chance of eradicating poverty and its causes from our society”.

The Poverty Briefing 2018 presents up to date information on the levels of poverty and the issues behind them. It spells out many of the specific issues which impact directly on the lives of people. These relate to inadequate income, lack of access to a range of core services such as health, housing and literacy, numeracy and childcare and the need for quality employment for those who can work.

Finally the Briefing calls for a commitment and action across Government to address poverty and its causes and as the Government begins its consultation on a new social inclusion plan. It outlines a range of proposals which an all Government strategy needs to implement if it to be serious in tackling the causes of poverty. The proposals are for:

  • A comprehensive and ambitious strategy
  • A strategy for a decent income
  • A strategy for quality jobs
  • A strategy for quality services
  • A strategy to end homelessness and ensure housing for all
  • A strategy based on human rights, dignity and equality
  • A strategy which we can afford

Download the Poverty Briefing 2018 and proposals for a new Anti-Poverty Strategy.

Have your say! Be inspired by the EAPN briefing! And join the ATD Walk As One initiative to make the next plan the best ever!

Solidarity Day: TDs and Senators too are invited to walk as one!

Letter sent to all TDs and Senators on 20th December 2017


Dear Senators, dear TDs, dear MEPs,

Today, Wednesday 20th December, is the United Nations’ International Human Solidarity Day.

This year’s celebration of the Solidarity Day comes after two years when leaders of the world and Taoiseach Enda Kenny TD adopted the 17 Sustainable Development Goals and the 2030 Agenda, an inclusive development agenda to eradicate poverty, protect the planet and ensure dignity for all.

Early in 2018, your colleague and Minister Denis Naughten TD will present the Irish 2030 Agenda Implementation Plan. A few months later, Minister Regina Doherty TD will finalize the new National Action Plan for Social Inclusion.

In order to make the best of this momentum in the Country’s efforts to end poverty, All Together in Dignity Ireland (ATD) needs your help!

All the Jedis on the Skellig Islands, and every citizens on the main Island are needed. Help us to gather them!

To make sure that the new National Action Plan for Social Inclusion is the best ever, ATD is running a campaign to collect names of citizens ready to contribute to the drafting and the implementation of this plan.  An on-line campaign is entitled “Walk as One” and can be accessed here www.walkasone.ie.

Today, on UN Solidarity Day, we have a request: would you be ready to share the www.walkasone.ie link with some dedicated citizens in your constituency? As Senators, TDs or MEPs, you know who in your local communities are genuinely committed to make change happen and stop poverty. Please, do invite them to join this national mobilisation. Let’s start to Walk as One!

A first assessment of this citizens’ mobilisation will be done on Social Justice Day (20 February 2018) and all signatories of the call to action will be contacted on this day. Early in March, at the time of the National Social Inclusion Forum in Dublin Castle (8 March 2018), contact will be made with the team of Minister Regina Doherty TD in charge of drafting the plan.

Do help us to initiate this national movement!

We use also the opportunity of this letter to give you the link to the 2018 End Poverty Calendar prepared by the Irish 17 October Committee. The End Poverty Calendar will inspire all activists in this very special year.

2018 will also mark the Centenary of the birth Nelson Mandela, patron of the Make Poverty History Campaign, the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Martin Luther King, at a time when he was launching the Poor People’s Campaign, and the 30th anniversary of the passing of Joseph Wresinski, the initiator of the UN End Poverty Day.

We thank you in advance for your support.

We wish you a very inspiring International Human Solidarity Day, a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Best regards,

Gerald Doherty,
Chair of the Board, All Together in Dignity Ireland
ATD, 26 Mountjoy Square, Dublin 1

Let’s call again on the Government to urgently put in place an integrated anti-poverty plan!

The CSO Survey on Income and Living Conditions has been published a few days before Christmas on 19 December 2017.

It shows that despite some small improvements in poverty and deprivation rates, more than 790,000 people are living in poverty in Ireland, of which over 250,000 are children.

Despite an increase in average incomes and other signs of economic recovery, these figures show that a significant proportion of the population is still living in very difficult circumstances. These figures are unacceptable in a rich, developed country like Ireland.

Read the reactions of:

and the call on all Senators and TDs by ATD a day after the publication, on International Human Solidarity Day (20 Decemebr 2017).

“At Christmas time we are reminded of those living in poverty and called on to provide important support to charities. However, poverty is unacceptable, especially in a wealthy country like Ireland, so it is crucial that we address the causes of poverty and make sure poverty is something no-one has to face. Let’s again calls on the Government to urgently put in place an integrated anti-poverty plan with the ambition necessary to make a decisive impact on poverty.” says Paul Ginnell, Director of EAPN Ireland.

It’s time to #Walkas1!

The call to action “Walking together for an inclusive society” has been launched!

Discover the call now!

On 17 October 2017, SAOL project and ATD Ireland delegates have been welcomed by Maureen O’Sullivan TD and colleagues (TDs and Senators) in Leinster House AV room to mark the UN End Poverty Day. The SAOL project presented “Object poverty” and ATD launched the #WalkAsOne call to action.

See ATD’s Press Release here.