My Department is finalising the new social inclusion strategy with a proposed six year timeframe covering the period 2019 – 2025. It will have a ‘whole of government’ approach which recognises the shared responsibility across Government to achieve improved outcomes for the most vulnerable and marginalised in our society.
The SILC data for 2017 showed that the consistent poverty rate had decreased to 6.7% in, from 8.2% in 2016. The percentage of the population experiencing deprivation also significantly decreased, falling to 18.8% from the 2016 figure of 21%. These figures demonstrate that the Government’s approach to tackling poverty through the provision of income supports, access to quality services and supports for people in taking up employment is working.
This approach will be continued in the new strategy which will have a theme of active inclusion to enable every citizen, notably the most disadvantaged, to fully participate in society, including having a job.
It is my intention that the strategy will be published in Q2 2019.