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New podcast episode on poverty and human rights released

17 Oct 2023

The Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission (NIHRC) has today launched the third episode in its podcast series ‘Shared Goals.’ This episode marks International Day for the Eradication of Poverty (17 October) and looks at the poverty crisis and human rights in Northern Ireland. Staff from the Commission are joined in discussion by Jonny Currie, NI Network Lead at the Trussell Trust.

According to the Department for Communities, in 2021/2022, 300,000 people (16 per cent of individuals) were in relative poverty and 249,000 people (13 per cent) were in absolute poverty in Northern Ireland .Over the last five years the number of parcels distributed by the Trussell Trust has increased by 141%. This goes to show the scale of the crisis in Northern Ireland and the need for immediate action.

It is vital that the Northern Ireland Executive implement an anti-poverty strategy and that it is done so effectively and is adequately resourced without further delay to avoid further detrimental impact on rights.

Alyson Kilpatrick, Chief Commissioner, NIHRC, said:

“The release of this episode of our ‘Shared Goals’ series is particularly timely, not only marking the annual International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, but also because of the ever-increasing cost of living crisis. Many families across Northern Ireland are now facing another winter with great uncertainty. We are grateful to Jonny for taking the time to speak to us about this important issue and highlighting the scale of the crisis.”

Jonny Currie, NI Network Lead at the Trussell Trust added:

“We want to see an end to the need for food banks in Northern Ireland - this should be a shared goal for all of us. It's not right that people can't afford the essentials for themselves. Hunger in Northern Ireland isn't about a lack of food it's about a lack of income and we are thankful for the opportunity to highlight this in the podcast.”

You can listen to the podcast here: or search for ‘Shared Goals’ wherever you listen to your podcasts.



Statistics from the Department for Communities and the Trussel Trust.


The Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission is a National Human Rights Institution with A status accreditation from the United Nations. We operate independently in full accordance with the United Nations General Assembly Resolution 48/134 (the Paris Principles). The Commission is a non-departmental public body and receives grant-in-aid from the United Kingdom government through the Northern Ireland Office.

Trussell Trust

The Trussell Trust is a charity that support a nationwide network of food banks and provides emergency food and support to people locked in poverty, and campaign for change to end the need for food banks in the UK. There are more than 1,300 food bank centers in their network including 22 in Northern Ireland.

Shared Goals Podcast Series

The Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission brings you a new series of our Shared Goals podcast shining the spotlight on current human rights issues here in Northern Ireland. Human rights touch on every aspect of life. From health, to housing, to child protection, climate change, gender equality, and rights of persons with disabilities amongst many others. In this series staff from the Commission interview diverse voices including academics, practitioners and activists who are championing human rights, and to highlight current human rights issues.

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