Number of ‘working poor’ in Ireland growing

Number of ‘working poor’ in Ireland growing

Liam Fitzpatrick

The Capuchin Day Centre in Dublin has seen an increase in the number of ‘working poor’ availing of the centre’s services in recent weeks as the cost of living continues to rise.

Irish prices and apartment costs have drastically increased over the past year, making it difficult for those working low-pay jobs to provide for their families. Apartment prices have risen 17.6%, and overall prices increased 7.8% between May 2021 and 2022.

“What we’re noticing at the moment is the number of families that are trying to make ends meet, and the difficulty that the people that lose their jobs are having, great difficulty,” Brother Kevin Crowley, founder of the Capuchin Day Centre, said.

According to Social Justice Ireland (SJI), 17% of the over 660,000 Irish in poverty are ‘working poor’, or those living in poverty who are currently employed.

SJI estimates that over 130,000 people fall into the ‘working poor’ category.

About 1,000 people turn to the centre for breakfast and dinner service every day. The centre also provides baby nappies and formula, fresh clothing, and basic medical care including a doctor, nurse, dentist, and chiropodist.

Read Liam Fitzpatrick’s full interview with Bro. Kevin Crowley here.