Barnardos: Findings of CSO Statistics Survey on Income and Living Conditions ‘Unacceptable’
Barnardos children's charity says the CSO Statistics Survey on Income and Living Conditions (SILC) findings on deprivation are unacceptable. The findings state that one in five children (19.9%) experienced deprivation last year in Ireland and that just under one in six (15.2%) found themselves at risk of poverty.
This means that almost one quarter of a million children (approximately 240,000) went without last year. Too many children and families are experiencing poverty, and as a result are being deprived of/struggling to access fundamental life essentials, such as heating and food as well as appropriate housing.
The statistics further demonstrate how vulnerable one parent families are to poverty, with 14.1% of one parent families living in consistent poverty compared to 5.3% of families with two parents.
It is vital that the soon to be established Child Poverty and Wellbeing Unit focuses its attention immediately on tackling childhood deprivation by encouraging government departments, including the Department of Social Protection and Department of Children, to work collaboratively to introduce measures aimed at reducing the number of families being pulled into poverty.
Suzanne Connolly, Barnardos CEO said: ‘Across our services we support children living in poverty. We see first-hand the impact it has on children’s lives and their families around them.
We witness the financial strain parents are placed under to provide their children with basic necessities week in and week out. For the families we support poverty can exasperate additional vulnerabilities such as parental mental health issues, parental substance use and increase parental tensions. It can also make confronting those issues all the more difficult.
Research continues to demonstrate that the longer children live in poverty the worse an impact it has on their future outcomes, particularly health, education and employment, because childhood lasts a lifetime.’
 One of the 11 items listed in the deprivation index