Getting ready for the election – and a free gift

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EAPN Ireland Election Blog # 1

As the parties gear up for General Election 2016, it is important to remember that this is not just a form of amusement for political enthusiasts.

 

The big question, as the country emerges from recession, is whether the parties forming the next Government, and opposition TDs holding them to account, will prioritise the resources and policies to seriously reduce poverty and inequality.

 

This Blog will be used to track the debate and proposals through the election.

  1. We will publish a series of short articles from  party spokespeople and TDs on how they plan to fight poverty
  2. We will publish articles on what needs to be done on key policy areas
  3. We will track debates, interventions etc. as the election campaign goes on.

 

Our latest publication, the European Anti-Poverty Network Ireland Briefing on poverty, 2015 and proposals for 2016-2021, describes in some detail the extent of poverty in Ireland and the challenges faced by the next Government.

 

Section 5 of that publication, Towards a new anti-poverty strategy, urges

“…all parties and candidates for the next Dáil to commit to a new five year strategy against poverty and social exclusion covering the term of the next Dáil, to replace the current National Action Plan for Social Inclusion (2007-2016).”

 

It explains the elements of:

  • A comprehensive 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 “… a five-year plan to bring overall Irish taxation levels from their current 30% of GDP to the EU average, which is currently 40% of GDP.

 

We would encourage you to use read this paper before talking to canvassers and to actively raise the issue of a strong five-year programme to fight poverty with candidates and parties.

 

And for those of you who have read this far, here is you free gift – Your free election survival kit.  Use and enjoy!

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