Children and poverty


Sir, – The latest CSO report which revealed that 135,000 children are living in poverty is deplorable (“One in eight children without basics such as heating or warm clothes”, Front Page, January 22nd) . Fergus Finlay of Barnardos put it succinctly when he said that that number is the equivalent to the entire population of Mayo, the Taoiseach’s constituency. Would Enda Kenny tolerate his whole constituency suffering daily deprivation? I doubt it. Yet that is what is happening on a daily basis to an equivalent proportion of children. Sometimes we may grumble about how austerity is affecting us, be it having to cut back on annual holidays or giving up certain indulgences, but when it affects children to the point of deprivation then something is grossly wrong in the way society is functioning.

When parents, through no fault of their own, are unable to adequately provide for their children then the State has a duty to step in. Our policymakers need to take a long, hard look at the consequences of decisions which have adversely affected the lives of children. – Yours, etc,



Co Louth.