Our recent research on the lived experience of poverty and social exclusion in Wales highlighted the importance of tackling poverty stigma – both because poverty stigma harms the mental health of people in poverty, and because it can make it harder for them to get the support they need or participate in their communities.
In response and as part of the International Public Policy Observatory (IPPO) we are supporting public services and policy makers in Wales to understand poverty stigma and how it affects their communities. Our work will seek to identify what public services can do to ensure their services reduce rather than (re)produce poverty stigma. We are working with policy makers and practitioners, academics and researchers, and experts by experience, to bring the full range of expertise to bear on this challenge.
In November 2023 we held an in-person workshop at Tŷ Pawb in Wrexham, which brought together a broad mix of policymakers in local and national government, practitioners, young people, and academic and lived experience experts, from all over Wales and elsewhere in the UK. We followed up the in-person workshop with a second workshop online in early December 2023, attended by a mix of those who had joined us in Wrexham and those who had been unable to attend in person. The overarching aim of these workshops was to identify what WCPP or others could do next to support public services in Wales to use the best available evidence to tackle poverty stigma more effectively.
We are currently in the process of reviewing the ideas that emerged from the two workshops, in collaboration with Swansea Poverty Truth Commission and the APLE Collective.
We will then seek to test and refine proposals for the next phase of this work with potential partners in public services and elsewhere.
If you are interested in being involved in the next phase of our work on supporting public services to tackle poverty stigma, or if you are a policy maker or practitioner and there is a particular piece of work you have in mind that would be useful, please email the project team using the details below:
Read Amanda Hill-Dixon’s piece on this issue in The MJ: Cutting Through The Stigma