WHEN WE SAY a person in India is poverty-stricken, we do not use the word in exactly the same sense that we apply it here. In India, the poverty stricken are by definition starving to death. In Ireland, the term" poverty " begins before the starvation line, and is based on a qualitative assessment of conditions relative to our environment. By John Feeney, Dan Ruddy and Vincent Browne. Published in Nusight, November 1969.
THE CLEANING WOMEN in UCD earn £6 5s. Od. for a five day week. There are 25 of them. They work from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. and from 2.30 p.m. until 5.30 p.m. This is a thirty hour week, but they have no recognised breaks which makes their week's work equivalent to a normal employee's. On their £6 they pay 9s. 6d. in insurance and up to £1 in income tax. This lowers their weekly salary to £4£4 10s. a week. By John Feeney, Dan Ruddy and Vincent Browne. Published in Nusight, November 1969.
SHE IS 23. She suffers from acute anxiety and chronic depression. Her nerves are so bad that she cannot go out alone, cannot take a bus or go into a crowded shop. Intelligent and articulate she understands her condition, and understands too that it is aggravated by the frightening insecurity of her situation.
MRS. K. stands in the queue for Home Assistance.
"I feel like a beggar," she says. The office is crowded and as each applicant's turn comes the name and amount of assistance money is called out. There is no privacy, no dignity. "I cried the first time I came. I would go hungry, but I can't let the children starve."
. The non-contributory widows pension is £3 13s. 6d. per week. For each child there is a 12s. 6d. supplementary benefit.
. There are 5,000 widows under 44 and the vast majority of them would be responsible for rearing a family.
. Some 113,000 old people in Ireland may be classified as poor.
. The non-contributory old-age pension is £3 IOs. Od. per week.
. The Dublin Health Authority has stated that at present day rates old people need £4 Os. Od. per week to live (not including rent).
The contributory benefit in January 1970 for a single person is 75/- and an extra 62/6 for a spouse. There is a severe means test for the dole. An unemployed person cannot earn more than 61/6 in an urban area and 55/6 in rural areas. . *The inadequacy of this can be ameliorated at the discretion of the local authority with Home Assistance. By John Feeney, Dan Ruddy and Vincent Browne. Published in Nusight, November 1969.
A farm in Connaught
There are 43,000 farms of between five and fifteen acres. Another 130,000 are between fifteen and fifty acres-almost two-thirds of Irish farms are in the small farm bracket. By John Feeney, Dan Ruddy and Vincent Browne. Published in Nusight, November 1969.
Since publication of the Report on Itinerancy instances of victimisation by local residents has doubled. 6,129 itinerant children were born in 1960. 363 (7%) died before age of one month: 782 (15%) before the age of one year. By John Feeney, Dan Ruddy and Vincent Browne. Published in Nusight, November 1969.
In Dublin 20,000 people are on an approved housing list which requires a family to have two children before becoming eligible for inclusion. By John Feeney, Dan Ruddy and Vincent Browne. Published in Nusight, November 1969.