Social Justice Ireland (SJI) has called on Government to raise core rates in the forthcoming Social Welfare Bill by a further €8 a week, bringing the total to €20.

It says the €12 increase in Budget 2023 lags behind anticipated inflation for necessities in the coming year.

The Social Welfare Bill, which will implement measures announced by Minister Heather Humphreys, will commence in the Dáil in November.

In its latest report, Poverty Focus 2022, Social Justice Ireland says increasing social welfare by €20 per week is necessary to cover the cost of inflation and move towards benchmarking social welfare rates.

SJI says the Government and policymakers should acknowledge that Ireland has "an ongoing poverty problem".

The report says people unable to work due to an illness or disability have the highest risk of poverty in Irish society, with almost two in five people in this cohort living in poverty.

The independent think-tank says it is "only logical" that if people with a disability are to be equal participants in society, the extra costs generated by their disability should not be borne by them alone.

"Society at large should act to level the playing field by covering those extra but ordinary costs. Doing so would also address the very high poverty rates among this group," the report stated.