Sinn Féin spokesperson on Education, Donnchadh Ó Laoghaire TD, has urged the Minister for Education to back the party’s proposals to cut back-to-school costs for parents when they are debated in the Dáil this evening.
The Sinn Féin motion contains proposals to support families affected by the price of uniforms, books, school transport and voluntary contributions.
Speaking this afternoon, Teachta Ó Laoghaire said:
“This evening, I will bring forward a motion in the Dáil to bring much-needed help to families hit by rising back-to-school costs. These costs are putting huge pressure on families already struggling with the cost of living crisis.
“Today, the Government has begun leaking to the media that they may take some parts of the Sinn Féin proposals on board. If this is the case, I welcome any progress towards supporting hard-pressed families. This is happening because of Sinn Féin and opposition pressure on this issue. However, rumours aren’t enough for families who need support now- the Government must back this up with action this evening.
“My motion this evening is an opportunity for Minister Foley to come forward, show leadership and back Sinn Féin’s proposals to cut back to school costs. If the Government are serious about supporting families, they will vote in favour of our policies. We need not just a rate increase to Back to Education, we need to see it expanded because so many middle income families are struggling.
“Families need certainty now, not for the Government to fuel speculation without acting. They need to step up to the plate this evening and deliver for families.
“Back-to-school costs are hitting families now and they need support urgently, not vague promises of something that may or may not materialise in a few months.
“A Sinn Féin government would stand up for families hit by the cost of living crisis.”
Sinn Féin’s motion will be debated at 20:35 tonight