The Communities, Equality and Local Government Committee are currently holding an inquiry into Poverty in Wales. The inquiry has been divided into four strands, each focusing on one particular issue.
On Wednesday 5 November an event was held at the Norwegian Church, Cardiff Bay, to launch the Communities, Equality and Local Government Committee’s inquiry into Poverty in Wales, and to hold focus group discussions with individuals from various organisations across Wales currently dealing with poverty. The themes for discussion on the day were:
- How effectively the Tackling Poverty Action Plan, Strategic Equality Plan and other government strategies work together
- The impacts of poverty, particularly destitution and extreme poverty, on different groups of people
- How legislation, policy and budgets targeted at tackling poverty and reducing inequality are co-ordinated and prioritised across the Welsh Government.
For more photos from this event then visit our flickr page.
On Thursday 27 November and Monday 1 December members of the Committee visited various groups of people from all across Wales, including BAWSO in Wrexham, Chwarae Teg in Llanelli and the Ebbw Vale Food Bank.
The purpose of these visits was to:
- Find out how different groups of people experience poverty, and the particular challenges faced because of their characteristics, for example: age, disability, gender, refugee status, location, criminal record etc.;
- Explore which services and mechanisms are most effective at preventing people getting into poverty, for example: family support programmes, advice services, secure and supportive employment, childcare, education, internet access, energy efficiency measures;
- Find out how consistent services to improve the lives of people in poverty are across Wales, for example: food banks, access to healthcare, transport, crisis loans and debt advice.
Fuel poverty, access to housing and access to education and training were some of the things discussed as the main issues facing people on a low-income.
The Committee have also been taking oral evidence during their Committee Meetings at the Senedd. They have already spoken to Mary Powell-Chandler who is the Head of Save the Children, Dr Sam Clutton who is Assistant Director Policy at Barnardo’s Cymru on behalf of the End Child Poverty Network (ECPN) and Catriona Williams from Children in Wales End Child Poverty Network Cymru and a Commissioner on the UK Social Mobility Child Poverty Commission.
The Committee will continue to gather evidence before writing their report which will include recommendations to the Welsh Government. When published, the report will be available here.
You can keep up to date on the Committee’s inquiry by following @SeneddCelg on twitter.
Thanks to all of those who have contributed to the inquiry so far.