Alliance Calls for Release of Welfare Mitigation Measures

Alliance Communities spokeswoman Kellie Armstrong MLA called for the recommendations for the independent welfare mitigation measures to be released as soon as possible.

It comes after the MP for Strangford wrote to Communities Minister Deirdre Hargey asking for an update on when the independent review of the mitigations will be published.

The minister replied that the ministry had received the report, including recommendations for further mitigation measures, indicating that it would be published as soon as possible. However, the implementation of any new payment system will require executive approval.

“The Minister has had this report for some time and has now confirmed that it is in her possession,” Ms Armstrong said.

“While this is welcome, it should be released as soon as possible because it may contain solutions that could help some people deal with the cost of living crisis now. I call on the minister to do so and ensure that the money spent on the report is not wasted. The first opportunity would have been months ago. We need to see what opportunities have been suggested that could help people across Northern Ireland.

“A working executive is needed to agree a budget and unfortunately, due to the DUP stalemate, this is currently not the case and no indication as to when it will change. In the meantime, the Alliance produced its crisis-fighting document, with proposals to help alleviate the cost-of-living crisis.

“All solutions must be discussed and opportunities taken to help people through this crisis. The Wellbeing Mitigation Report and its recommendations would go a long way towards achieving this.”

Jacob L. Thornton