Latest Updates

How to close the digital divide

24 Sep 2021 Nick GarbuttSocial Issues, Equality

Fast and reliable access to the internet is now widely regarded to be an essential utility, just like water and electricity.

How to close the digital divide

24 Sep 2021 Nick GarbuttSocial Issues

Fast and reliable access to the internet is now widely regarded to be an essential utility, just like water and electricity.

The £20 Universal Credit should stay. History says the cut will go ahead.

22 Sep 2021 Ryan MillerWelfare Reform, Universal Credit, Poverty, Inequality

Dr Therese Coffey remained in place as DWP Minister during the recent cabinet reshuffle. A change in direction seems unlikely.

The reality of Universal Credit has always been at war with its stated aims. The £20 uplift should stay – or be increased – but reducing payments would be in keeping with standards set by this major welfare reform.

How to die well

17 Sep 2021 Nick GarbuttHealth

Everyone wants to live well. It is also important to die well.

The pandemic, women, and Building Back Better

16 Sep 2021 Ryan MillerHealth, Economy, Childcare, Caring, Covid-19, Inequality, Equality, Women

Photo by Amy Hirschi on Unsplash

The Women’s Policy Group NI has relaunched its Covid-19 Feminist Recovery Plan. Scope looks at why this is important.

Olwen Lyner: doing the right things, for the right people, for the right reasons

10 Sep 2021 Nick GarbuttSector Issues, Criminal Justice

One of Northern Ireland’s most highly respected and influential Third Sector leaders announced her retirement this week.

Climate change is here and now

9 Sep 2021 Ryan MillerClimate Change, Sector Issues, Environment

Photo by K. Mitch Hodge on Unsplash

The UK is already feeling the effects of climate change. A new report by the British Red Cross identifies the impact of heatwaves, how these will intensity, and what should be done in response.

Milkshakes, chicken bites and workers' rights

3 Sep 2021 Nick GarbuttEconomy

This has not been a good week for lovers of milkshakes, Gregg’s chicken bites and Coors beers.

Back to school for children with SEN?

31 Aug 2021 Ryan MillerEducation, SEND, SEN, Inequality, Covid-19

Photo by Alireza Attari on Unsplash

This academic year will hopefully face far less disruption than the previous two. This is important for all children – especially those with special educational needs.

Gone Phishing: charities and cyber-crime

27 Aug 2021 Nick GarbuttGovernance, Crime

A disturbing new report reveals the vulnerability of charities and small businesses in Northern Ireland to cyber-crime.

Stormont’s budget process and its vision for Northern Ireland are out of sync

24 Aug 2021 Ryan MillerSector Issues, Governance, Funding

Northern Ireland is strapped for cash. Using money well is essential for government. According to a recent NIAO report, that is not happening.

Duty of Candour: decision time looms for Swann

19 Aug 2021 Nick GarbuttHealth

Pic Credit: Unsplash

When medical staff make mistakes in treatment it is imperative that they are faced up to and that the families of those affected are told.

The pandemic has “turbo-charged” wealth inequality

17 Aug 2021 Ryan MillerEconomy, Inequality, Post-pandemic recovery

The UK was already financially unequal. Covid-19 has made that worse. Any social and economic recovery must take this into account.

Where charity in Belfast began

13 Aug 2021 Nick GarbuttSector Issues

This month Belfast’s oldest charity the Belfast Charitable Society celebrates the 250th anniversary of the building of its home, Clifton House.

NI and climate change: a fork in the road

10 Aug 2021 Ryan MillerClimate Change, Economy

Photo by Matt Palmer on Unsplash

Scope takes a look at how NI’s two competing climate change bills shape up when compared with wider UK policy, and the reality of our changing planet as laid down in the new IPCC report.

Religion, politics and the Housing Bishop

6 Aug 2021 Nick GarbuttHousing, Faith

Next month the Church of England’s first Housing Bishop will be officially installed at a ceremony at Chelmsford Cathedral.

The third sector: confidence, reinvigoration and recognition

2 Aug 2021 Ryan MillerSector Issues, Economy, Society, Covid-19, Post-pandemic recovery

Charities do lots of heavy lifting (photo by Joel Muniz on Unsplash)

If we want to use the pandemic as a line in the sand, and to create a better society and economy during this period of great upheaval, the third sector needs to be more than an afterthought.

The cruelty and lunacy of cutting Universal Credit

30 Jul 2021 Nick GarbuttWelfare

The £20-a-week cut to Universal Credit planned for October will be the biggest overnight drop in the basic rate of social security since the foundation of the welfare state, according to analysis from the Joseph Rowntree Foundation.  

Disability discrimination against children is “institutionalised” within NI’s education system

27 Jul 2021 Ryan MillerEducation, SEN, Equality

Photo by Nathan Anderson on Unsplash

The Education Authority has acknowledged failures but it will have to prove that any reforms are genuine.

The RQIA: what went wrong

23 Jul 2021 Nick GarbuttHealth, Governance

Last June, during the most severe health crisis we have ever faced, the board of the Northern Ireland’s health and social care regulator, the RQIA resigned en masse.


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