CNIS warns that around 20% of Portuguese people live in poverty

«There are many people who work and, even though they work, they live in poverty»

Around 20% of the Portuguese population lives in poverty and, without State support, these numbers could reach “close to 40%”, warned this Saturday, October 14th, the president of the Confederation of Solidarity Institutions (CNIS) .

«Unfortunately, poverty has not been combated in the way it was important to combat. We would really like to lower the numbers, they are still around 20% and if it weren't for social transfers it would still be much more: we would be close to 40% of people living in poverty», lamented Father Lino Maia.

The person in charge was speaking to journalists in Portalegre, on the sidelines of the 16th Solidarity Festival, organized by the National Confederation of Solidarity Institutions (CNIS).

«And then there is another problem that is serious. There are many people who work and, even though they work, they live in poverty, the income they have, despite the commitment that has been made to increasing wages, but minimum wages, people do not have the income to face the challenges, the needs», he added.

According to Father Lino Maia, Private Social Solidarity Institutions (IPSS) «are faced with all these problems and a few more».

«In principle, and it should be like this, they should privilege those most in need, but the income they have is not enough», he lamented.

The president of the CNIS said that the State "is transferring resources" to these institutions, but they are "insufficient" to deal with daily problems.

“There are many institutions that are, in fact, faced with many difficulties,” he warned.

«For me, the big problem, the big fear, is that they [some IPSS] deviate from what their mission is, which is to privilege those most in need, and by deviating from this mission they end up having no space», he added.