My Department is the largest in Government comprising of almost 6,000 civil servants. Owing to the wide range of services it provides, the Department positively impacts on the lives of almost every citizen in the State in the course of their life; from child benefit to the State pension and every possible life event in between - including maternity, paternity, illness, disability, unemployment and redundancy. 2018 was a year of continued recovery in employment and stable economic growth. As a Government, our top priority for the coming year is to continue our prudent approach to the economy and the management of public spending. As a Department, our priority is to address the needs of those who most need our help, to reduce poverty and enhance access to employment. The Budget changes in 2018 are shown to have had the greatest impact on non-earning households, increasing their income, their opportunities and reducing poverty.