27 Oct 2022
The CEO of the Community Foundation for Northern Ireland has called for the immediate restoration of an Executive ahead of the deadline for an election to be reached on the 28th of October 2022.
Speaking ahead of the deadline Róisín Wood CEO of the Community Foundation said:
“The Community Foundation has supported over 1,000 grassroots organisations this year alone benefitting 1 in 3 individuals in Northern Ireland. As a funder, we listen and engage with our grantees on a regular basis. Their voice matters to us and the challenges they are facing matter to us.
“We work and support local community groups, who work with some of the most vulnerable and marginalised in our society including those who are experiencing or facing homelessness, asylum seekers and refugees, older people, those with special educational needs, and many, many more.
“An overriding theme, recurring at our grantee network, is the huge challenge of the Cost-of-Living Crisis. Those we work with are facing spiraling energy bills, heating bills, facing choices of protecting front-line services and keeping their doors open. This is the stark reality right across the community and voluntary sector.
“Only this week we have seen an expert review, commissioned by the Department for Communities has called for new welfare mitigations, but these cannot be acted upon without an Executive. We cannot bring forwards an Anti-Poverty strategy without Executive approval and we are facing further public spending cuts under a new Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, and the Chancellor, Jeremy Hunt’s, forthcoming budget announcements with no local ability to respond.
“In order for those organisations we represent and support to receive the levels of assistance needed to survive and to continue to provide vital services for so many we need the immediate restoration of an Executive at Stormont. We need local politicians to make the right decisions that support local people and organisations. Anything less is a dereliction of duty at this time.”