The human cost of the draft budget set out by Stormont’s communities department would be “colossal”, it has been warned.
he Department for Communities (DfC) is responsible for benefits, social housing, regeneration, sport and other issues.
Its draft budget for the 2020/21 financial year includes cuts to welfare reform mitigations and homeless support.
In the department’s own Equality Impact Assessment (EQIA) of the draft budget, which is out for consultation, officials stated that the proposed spending allocations “will impact on the department’s ability to deliver public services, support Covid-19 recovery and deliver on the wider Executive priorities as outlined in the New Decade New Approach (NDNA) agreement.”
The NDNA deal made commitments for the Executive to develop and implement an anti-poverty strategy, as well as extending current welfare mitigation measures, such as a subsidy to the bedroom tax, which are due to expire at the end of next month.