Irish minister rejects call to scrap child benefit

Joan Burton, Social Protection Minister for the Republic of Ireland, has rejected calls to scrap individual child benefit payments in the country.

Responding to a claim by Children’s Minister Frances Fitzegerald that the money might be better spent of funding extra childcare places, Burton said she was committed to universal payments.

According to a report in the Irish Independent, Fitzgerald said the Irish government currently devotes €2bn, or 10 per cent of its annual welfare budget, to child benefit payments, describing this as a “kind of Celtic tiger thing, with rates increasing for individual payments”.

The 62 year-old minister said that in Scandinavian countries, by contrast, working parents receive subsidised pre- and after-school childcare.

A spokesman for the Social Protection Minister, however, insisted that she was“strongly in favour of universal payments”, and said provision for extra childcare places had been included in next year’s budget.

Photo of the Irish Parliament by Joachim S. Müller via Flickr under a Creative Commons licence

 

Marilyn Stowe

The senior partner at Stowe Family Law, Marilyn Stowe is one of Britain’s best known divorce lawyers with clients throughout the country, in Europe, the Far East and the USA.

View more from this author

Leave a comment