Seminar report – Progressing an anti-poverty strategy for Northern Ireland
In June 2023, the Equality Coalition, Barnardo’s NI, and the Northern Ireland Anti-Poverty Network (NIAPN) held a joint seminar calling for the development of an anti-poverty strategy to be a day one priority for the next NI Executive.
‘Progressing an anti-poverty strategy for Northern Ireland’ took place at Stormont on Wednesday 28 June 2023 and was sponsored by Emma Sheerin MLA, with co-sponsors Gerry Carroll MLA, Mike Nesbitt MLA, Sinéad McLaughlin MLA, and Kate Nicholl MLA. The half-day seminar was attended by MLAs, civil servants, academics, and civil society representatives.
NI has been waiting for an anti-poverty strategy for almost twenty years following a commitment arising from the 2006 St Andrews Agreement legislation. During the seminar, expert speakers examined what progress has been made to date in developing the strategy, while also considering what needs to be included within the strategy to make it as effective as possible.
The seminar centred on the following key asks:
- The adoption and implementation of an overarching, comprehensive anti-poverty strategy based on objective need as a day one priority for a new Executive. This strategy should have clear, timebound targets and build upon the detailed work that has been carried out to date in order to ensure expedient delivery and implementation of actions.
- In the interim, DfC and all government departments should progress the development of the draft strategy as much as is possible by in readiness for a new Executive.
A comprehensive report from the seminar has now been compiled and is available here.
The anti-poverty strategy must be taken forward at the earliest possible opportunity.