Caitríona Twomey said the cost-of-living crisis is “crippling” families who are having to make sacrifices.
Her comments come as Barnardos’ Cost of Living Crisis — Impact on Children Report 2023 revealed 37% of parents have had to go without or cut down on heating, while 23% have had to do the same in relation to electricity, and 20% when it came to food.
Some 28% of parents said they had cut back on or gone without medical care, medicines, therapy or health assessments over the past six months, while 43% said they had cut back on, or their children had gone without new clothes.
Almost two-thirds of parents (57%) said they had cut back on their children’s social activities and entertainment, or they had gone without.
Speaking to The Echo, Ms Twomey said: “The onus is on the Government to protect and look after the citizens and they have to be doing it now before things get really out of hand for a lot of families.