SOCIAL WELFARE BILL 2017 was discussed again in the Dáil today. Gross inequalities in pensions cost some pensioners, mainly women, up to €35 a week; this is as a result of new rules brought in in 2012 by Joan Burton. Pensioners for Equality a campaigning group are fighting this. We all have to get behind them on it.


This is the second time I spoke on pensions yesterday (6.12.17) in the Dáil debate on the Social Welfare Bill 2017. We have been promised a report on pensions inequality for the last 9 months and still waiting. Pensioners for Equality, the campaigning group, will be interested to hear the new date in Jan, when we can expect the report. Lets make sure it happens.


Published on 24 Feb 2017

In the Dáil yesterday Brid Smith TD pointed out the widening gender gap – women are earning less and getting less in pensions than they were, compared with men. She linked this to the struggle of the mainly female workforce in TESCO and called for solidarity actions including supporting a mass picket of striking TESCO shops on Sat 25th Feb at 12.00 midday.

A recent Oxfam report has shown how the top 1 percent of billionaires are gaining more of the world’s resources as 62 billionaires now own more than 3.6 billion people.


Ireland is doing its very best to help this trend towards grater inequality by creating a tax haven for its own 1% billionaire class.

Read more »

Oxfam report highlights massive inequality on a global level

Report shows system is designed to favour the rich
Recent report by TASC shows Ireland is deeply unequal despite government spin
People Before Profit believes that the recent report by Oxfam ‘An Economy for the 1%’ is a timely reminder that the system of Capitalism is deeply flawed and favours the wealthy in societies across the world. The report shows that 62 people own as much as the poorer half of the world’s population.
A recent report by TASC called ‘The Distribution of Wealth in Ireland’ (2015) also pointed out, specifically in Ireland that ‘wealth is highly concentrated, with 72.7% of net wealth held by the top 20%, which is higher than the Euro Area average of 67.6%. The bottom half of the distribution has around 5% of wealth. It also points out that when looking at the concentration at the top, the results show that the top 10% have more than half of all the net wealth in Ireland (53.8%). The Top 5% have 37.7% while the Top 1% has 14.8%’.
People Before Profit spokesperson, Bríd Smith said-
“We can see from the Oxfam report ‘An Economy for the 1%’ that the 99% in the world are getting poorer at an alarming rate and the richest 1% are getting richer.“People Before Profit has always argued that world-wide the Capitalist system is increasing poverty which in turn is creating further inequality and alienation.
“In Ireland we have the appalling situation with the housing crisis where over 130,000 families are on a waiting list and thousands are homeless including over 1,500 children. In this state we have children going to school hungry with over 5,000 children.
“The government claim that we are in economic recovery but it is abundantly clear that this is a recovery for the rich at the expense of everyone else. Government policy has taken money out of public services and working people’s pockets to put into the hands of the rich.“People Before Profit believe that we should be reversing this regressive wealth inequality through progressive taxation where people are taxed on wealth, corporations pay the actual 12.5% share of tax and that there is a Financial Transaction Tax. This money should be used to fund our health service properly, fund our education system and provide a proper public housing programme”.

For more information- Cllr Bríd Smith ( 087 909 0166)
Twitter- @bridsmith
Notes- Bríd Smith is a People Before Profit General Election candidate for the Dublin South Central Constituency and a Dublin City Councillor.
Link to TASC report-