Byrne Welcomes End Of Supplementary Welfare Allowance

Fine Gael has welcomed the decision by the Minister for Social Protection to overhaul the supplementary welfare allowance and exceptional needs payments, which could see an end to the communion and confirmation payments.

Dublin South Central TD, Catherine Byrne said the current system was open to abuse and manipulation and welcomed the move by Joan Burton to scrap the allowances.

"I admire the courage shown by Minister Burton in her decision to review the current system.

"We must support people in financial difficulty and those living in poverty. But many aspects of the social welfare system are wide open to abuse, and what we need is a complete overhaul to ensure financial supports are targeted at those who need them most."

Speaking on RTÉ's News at One, Ms Burton said a review by community welfare officers made a number of recommendations, including that the average payment of €200 for holy communions be reduced to €110.

But she said that welfare officers would be allowed discretion when considering requests for exceptional needs payments.


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