Social Justice Ireland have urged Government to increase social welfare rates by €25 a week and child benefits by €50 a month.
This morning, Social Justice Ireland released their Budget Choices report, in which they urged Government to increase payments to "protect the most vulnerable" of the population.
On Breakfast Briefing, Economic and Social Analyst for the research institute, Colette Bennett said Government can "absolutely afford" to make these changes.
"What we're calling on Government to do is reverse the mistakes of Budget 2023, which increased the rich-poor gap by €199 across the year," she said.
"We want to see an increase in core social welfare, which would go some way to address both the cost of living pressures, but also towards the benchmark that we have been calling on Government to implement for years now.
"This is the Government's own benchmark that they implemented in 2007 and then forgot about."
Ms Bennett said an increase in social welfare by €25 a week would give those on the lowest incomes "a chance to maintain a decent standard of living."
"In terms of child benefit, we want to see that increased by €50 a month," she said.
"The Taoiseach – when he was reinstated again in December – he came out and he said we are going to address child poverty, we are going to make Ireland the best little country to grow up in.
"That requires investment in children and part of that is to make sure that families with children have adequate incomes."
Child welfare is something that is focused on prioritising the child, regardless of the financial position of the parent, Ms Bennett told the show.
"If Michael O'Leary or Conor McGregor went insolvent, their child benefit payment is not included in any income calculation – that is actually protected for the child," she said.
"It's prioritising children as part of a larger package in terms of the social infrastructure around children. What that means is, from the windfall tax, what we're calling on Government to do is to be prudent about this and to split the budget.
"We want to see windfall being dealt with separately and we want to see the core budget being dealt with as a normal budget."
Ms Bennett said this increase in social welfare and child benefit payments would result in a "slight inflationary impact."
"That would be tapered off by the fact that we have such an investment package in the infrastructure side so that we're actually protecting the Exchequer in the long term," she said.
"What we're saying is we need to see an income adequacy piece while we're building the infrastructure that we need. If you take housing, we're paying over €1 billion in current expenditure in landlord subsidies in the housing assistance payments alone.
"What we're looking for is an increase in the infrastructure side of that so that we're actually building the housing that reduces the bail on that side, and therefore makes the additional asks on social welfare more sustainable."