NICVA meets Minister on Welfare Reform

Following a meeting with DSD Minister Nelson McCausland to discuss the recent report which showed that Northern Ireland is set to be hit harder by welfare reform than any other part of the UK, NICVA has written to OFMdFM to request an update.

When the reforms have come into full effect the research estimates they will take £750m a year out of the Northern Ireland economy, equivalent to £650 a year for every adult of working age. This compares to an average of £470 a year across Great Britain.NICVA - Impact of Welfare Reform Report

The report, The Impact of Welfare Reform on Northern Ireland, carried out by researchers at Sheffield Hallam University found that Belfast, with an expected loss of £840 per adult of working age, is hit harder than any major city in Britain. Derry and Strabane are also hit very hard.

The Chair of NICVA’s Executive Committee, Marie Cavanagh and CEO Seamus McAleavey met DSD Minister Nelson McCausland on Tuesday 8 October to discuss the report.

Describing the meeting as 'very useful' Seamus added "On matters we had raised previously around proposals to mitigate the impact of the reforms with regard to housing, single payments and payment frequency the Minister reiterated that he had proposals with the NI Executive but that as agreement had not yet been reached he was not in a position to disclose them to us.

 It was our assumption we would have seen Government’s proposals before the summer.  So I have now followed up on the issue by writing to the First and deputy First Ministers enquiring about the situation.  It is important the proposals are not left to the last minute and then the Bill be rushed through accelerated passage to avoid Treasury financial penalties."

NICVA members will receive a hard copy of the report in the post. Additional hard copies can be requested from Cathy at [email protected]

Interview with Prof. Steve Fothergill (Sheffield Hallam University), 
Les Allamby (Law Centre NI) and Karen Hall (Disability Action NI)



More in-depth analysis of the results including interactive maps can be found at 


The event held on 3 October at NICVA was streamed live and susequently recorded. The full video recording can be accessed Here:
The following are a breakdown of recordings from each speaker.

Introduction by Marie Cavanagh, Chair of NICVA

Les Allamby, Law Centre NI

Imran Hussain - Child Poverty Action Group


Share your COVID-19 support service

Organisations providing support to people and communities can share their service information here

> Share your support

Not a NICVA member yet?

Save time, money and energy. Join NICVA and you’ll be connecting in to a strong network of local organisations focused on voluntary and community activity.

Join Us

NICVA now welcomes all small groups for free.