The Northern Ireland Assembly has been dissolved. The election will take place on Thursday 5 May 2016.

Minutes of Proceedings

Session: 2012/2013

Date: 27 November 2012

Venue: Room 29

The meeting commenced at 1.30pm in open session 

1. Apologies

There were no apologies.

2. Declaration of Interests

The Chairperson reminded Members that they are obliged to declare any relevant financial or other interests before and during each Committee meeting.

No Member declared any interests other than those already noted.

3. Minutes of the meeting of 26th November 2012

Agreed: The draft minutes of the meeting held on 26th November 2012 were agreed by the Committee.

4. Matters Arising

Members noted that Ms Sheila Mawhinney will be taking over as the full time Clerk to the Ad Hoc Committee.

Caitríona Ruane joined the meeting at 1.32 p.m.


5. Briefing from the Department for Social Development on the Welfare Reform Bill and Equality Impact Assessment

Tom Elliott joined the meeting at 1.33p.m.

Robin Swann joined the meeting at 1.33p.m.

Departmental Officials joined the meeting at 1.34p.m.

Ms Martina Campbell, Social Security Policy and Legislation, and Mr Michael Pollock, Social Security Policy and Legislation, provided the Committee with an overview of the Welfare Reform Bill and Equality Impact Assessment.

The briefing was followed by a question and answer session.

Lord Morrow left the meeting at 1.56p.m.

Robin Swann left the meeting at 2.00p.m.

Agreed: The Committee agreed that the Department should provide it with any further correspondence between DSD and the Equality Commission.

Robin Swann re-joined the meeting at 2.06p.m.

Agreed: The Committee agreed that the Department should provide clarity on the Section 75 groups added to the Family Resources Survey. The Committee also agreed to request further information on the gross weekly median income for Northern Ireland, and how this compares with the gross weekly median income in Britain.

Alastair Ross left the meeting at 2.28p.m.

Departmental Officials left the meeting at 2.32p.m.

6. Consideration of witnesses for Ad Hoc Committee evidence sessions

The Committee noted the details of organisations consulted by the Department for Social Development on the Welfare Reform Bill, as well as the Section 75 groups consulted by the Office of the First Minister and deputy First Minister on the Equality Impact Assessment of the Bill

Agreed: The Committee agreed to schedule briefings for Monday 3rd December 2012 from the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland and the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission.  The Committee further agreed to arrange briefings from the Northern Ireland Council for Ethnic Minorities and the Law Centre for Tuesday 4th December 2012.

7. Committee Deputies

Agreed: The Committee noted the list of deputies put forward by each party represented on the Committee and agreed that those that had not provided deputies would do so at their earliest convenience.

Colum Eastwood left the meeting at 2.47 pm.

8. Any Other Business

There was no other business.

9. Time, date and place of next meeting

The next meeting of the Committee will be held on Monday, 3rd December 2012 in Room 144 at 2.30pm.

The Chairperson adjourned the meeting at 2.50pm.

Mr Trevor Lunn MLA
Chairperson, Ad Hoc Committee on Conformity of Equalities Requirements, Welfare Reform Bill
Monday 3rd December 2012

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