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The Minister for Communities Deirdre Hargey has appointed an Independent Advisory Panel to complete the Welfare Mitigation Review. The panel, which NIRWN Director Louise Coyle sits on, has been asked to recommend mitigations to the social security benefit system in Northern Ireland. The work of a previous panel led to the social sector size criteria/bedroom tax and benefit cap for families not being implemented alongside compensation for a fixed period for claimants who lost out for example, when transferring from Disability Living Allowance to Personal Independence Payment.

The panel will look at those mitigations, what else can be done to recognise further changes to social security and wider considerations on how the Panel can support low income groups through the social security system, for example, since the last review Universal Credit has been introduced in Northern Ireland and the two-child policy which restricts entitlement for new claimants to Universal Credit, Child Tax Credit and Housing Benefit to two children only.

The panel would like to hear your views and experiences, whether as someone on social security or not. In particular, what do you think can be done to improve the current social security system?

Click here to provide your feedback.  Survey closes on 21 January