Readers like you keep news free for everyone.

More than 5,000 readers have already pitched in to keep free access to The Journal.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can help keep paywalls away.

Support us today
Not now

Burton ‘can’t rule out welfare cuts’ – even though Gilmore already has

Joan Burton believes it’s too early to say where the Budget will hit, 39 days after Eamon Gilmore ruled out welfare cuts.

Image: Eamonn Farrell/Photocall Ireland

SOCIAL PROTECTION MINISTER Joan Burton has admitted that December’s Budget may wield the axe on social welfare spending – despite assertions from the Taoiseach and Tánaiste that spending would be safeguarded.

RTÉ News reports remarks made by Burton at an event in Dublin this morning, where she said she could not offer a commitment that welfare would not be cut in December’s measures, which will seek to make up a shortfall of around €3.8bn.

There was better value for money to be had in the social welfare system, Burton said.

But less than six weeks ago – when they gave a press conference to mark their 100th day in power – Burton’s party leader, Tánaiste Eamon Gilmore, and the Taoiseach Enda Kenny pledged that social welfare spending would not be hit in the Budget.

At that press conference, the pair also pledged not to increase income taxes.

A government spokeswoman this afternoon commented that the Taoiseach and Tánaiste had said the social welfare rates would not be cut, but that the spending on social welfare would be reduced through other means.

Making a difference

A mix of advertising and supporting contributions helps keep paywalls away from valuable information like this article.

Over 5,000 readers like you have already stepped up and support us with a monthly payment or a once-off donation.

For the price of one cup of coffee each week you can make sure we can keep reliable, meaningful news open to everyone regardless of their ability to pay.

Yesterday, addressing the MacGill Summer School in Glenties, Kenny announced a “radical shake-up in our welfare, employment and training systems”.

More: Enda Kenny announces ‘radical’ changes to welfare >

About the author:

Gavan Reilly

Read next: