The Deepening Social and Economic Crisis

We are operating in completely extraordinary times with a general election having effectively been called for mid January – but with the possibility of a snap election at any time. We may have an IMF approved four year plan on Wednesday or we may not. We may have a budget for 2011 on the 7th of December or we may not.

It is likely that we will have an election campaign in January, fought between political parties on the basis of a 2011 budget and 4 year plan agreed with the ECB, the EU and the IMF. We are hearing European figures taking about Ireland having to “cut fast and cut deep” and we are hearing Government now proposing the €6Bn adjustment for 2011 will take the form of one-third tax increases and two-thirds expenditure cuts – and we all know where that two-thirds is going to come from – the incomes and services of vulnerable people and statutory funding for the services provided by charities – many of which are members of The Wheel. 

And it seems that there is no point in talking to anyone in Government about protecting vulnerable people in budget 2010 – because the fundamental decision-making about where the axe will fall will likely be made by officials from the IMF etc.

This is just to let you know that you and your organisation are not alone in facing into these extremely uncertain times.  The Wheel will be monitoring developments closely over the coming days and will be keeping our members informed of developments as we move inexorably through this crisis.  This is the first of a series of special communications we will be issuing to members to keep you informed and involved in our work to protect the sector in these truly unprecedented times.