The Poverty and Inequality Commission has today published a report that reviews progress on the fifteen recommendations made in ‘Shifting the Curve’, the first report by Naomi Eisenstadt in her role as the First Minister’s Independent Advisor on Poverty and Inequality.
Overall, our review finds that there has been considerable activity over the past three years in response to the recommendations. Particular areas in which there has been welcome progress include the introduction of the Fairer Scotland duty in April 2018; actions taken to ensure delivery of 50,000 affordable homes and the development of a strategy to tackle fuel poverty.
However, there has been a failure to ‘be bold’ on local tax reform. The Scottish Government needs to consider how changes to local tax could help right the wrong of poverty and inequality.
Despite some action having been taken, it is clear that there is a need for greater urgency and greater ambition in addressing the recommendations relating to low pay, childcare for primary age children, social security and youth employment.
A common theme throughout our review is lack of any information on the impact that the actions have had. This is a crucial omission as it is vitally important to be clear about the extent to which these actions are helping to ease the pressure on people affected by poverty.
The Commission now plans to look in more detail at the progress on the recommendation to ensure that public service delivery is respectful, person centred and preserves the dignity of people in poverty. If you would be interested in inputting into this work, or feel you could help in anyway, then please do get in touch.
Read the report here: Shifting the Curve – monitoring progress report