June 24, 2020
Economic recovery from Covid-19 must be handled fairly – John Brady TD

Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Employment Affairs and Social Protection John Brady has said that the economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic must be handled fairly, and that businesses and families in vulnerable positions cannot be expected to carry the burden.

Speaking in the Dáil today, Teachta Brady said;

“I want to take a moment to recognise the human cost of the Covid-19 virus across Europe and here at home, where over 1,700 of our citizens have passed away. I also want to bring attention to the fact that this is not the only serious challenge, the consequences of which this island is being forced to address.

“Under the current EU Recovery proposals, Ireland is due to receive just €3bn of the €750bn fund (0.0143%). This is due to the mechanism being deployed by the European Commission to calculate disbursements – this is simply unacceptable.

“This mechanism does not accurately reflect the impact of the virus on the Irish economy. This State has seen the 4th highest reported cases of Covid-19 per 1,000,000 population in the EU/EEA and UK.

“It is imperative upon the incumbent government to demand recognition not only of this fact, but also the fact of the enormous human suffering that has been wrought upon the people of this country as it has been forced to claw its way back from the chasm of economic despair over the last decade.

“As we face down the challenge of recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic, we must be cognisant of the impact of the devastation wrought by this government’s austerity driven response to the last virus to be visited upon us, that of course being the virus of greed.

“Never again should the ordinary people of this island, workers and families be forced to shoulder the burden of austerity.

“The regressive measures that have punished the ordinary people of this country whilst rewarding banking fat cats, vulture funds and the insurance industry, who have fed off the misery of others, must be left in the past.

“We must look to the future; offering confidence and compassion. Our response must be one of investment, in people, infrastructure and business.

“IBEC warns that without drastic intervention thousands of businesses face bankruptcy within six months. We must move to protect business lease holders, who are being asked to singlehandedly take the hit for rents owed over the period of the lockdown.

“We must do everything that we can to protect SME’s and otherwise thriving businesses, which are faced with potential closure due to no fault of their own.

“The burden of recovery must be shouldered fairly.”

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