In the Senedd, September 2023

Bevan Foundation The entrance of a building
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NewsOctober 6th, 2023

Find out how the Bevan Foundation’s ideas and insights informed debate in the Welsh Parliament in September 2023.

Despite the Senedd sitting for just three weeks in September, the Bevan Foundation’s insights and ideas made a significant contribution to debate.  There were three major areas which we helped to inform, as well as being quoted in questions and speeches. 

Informing debate on the cost of living

In plenary on 26th September 2023, Jane Hutt MS, Minister for Social Justice and Chief Whip, made a statement in the Senedd on the cost of living. In particular, she referred to the report of the expert group on the cost of living published that day, to which the Bevan Foundation had contributed.  The Minister outlined the actions being taken by the Welsh Government to support people to cope with rising prices, and also said that the extreme financial pressures faced by the Welsh Government meant it could not take forward some of the group’s recommendations.

Several members quoted the Bevan Foundation’s insights in the debate following the Minister’s statement. Mark Isherwood MS (Conservative) referred to the Foundation’s report on the Welsh Benefits System, as did Sioned Williams MS (Plaid Cymru) who also referred to the Foundation’s evidence on the severe hardship faced by families.

In response, the Minister said that she:

was very pleased to receive [the Bevan Foundation’s] report … to look at the way forward.

Shaping findings on debt

Senedd members debated the report of the Equality and Social Justice Committee on debt in plenary on 13th September 2023.  The Bevan Foundation had given oral evidence to the Committee’s inquiry and is pleased that the Committee, and the Senedd, found its findings useful.

In opening the debate, Jenny Rathbone MS (Labour) said:

… we very much welcome the Welsh Government’s work that they’re doing with the Bevan Foundation and others to streamline the Welsh benefits system, and ensure that it is less difficult to navigate and easier for people to understand what they’re entitled to.

In the debate that followed, Sarah Murphy MS (Labour) cited the Bevan Foundation’s Snapshot of Poverty in Summer 2023 findings,

Raising ambitions to solve child poverty

The Bevan Foundation was pleased to give oral evidence to the Senedd Equality and Social Justice Committee’s inquiry into child poverty on 25th September. The Committee listened carefully to our views, with the Committee’s report due shortly. 

The day after the Committee meeting, 26th September, the Bevan Foundation’s evidence and views were quoted by Rhun ap Iorwerth MS (Plaid Cymru) in First Minister’s Questions.  

Poverty in Arfon

The Bevan Foundation was pleased that Sian Gwenllian MS (Plaid Cymru) asked a question about the Bevan Foundation’s report on poverty in Arfon on 13th September.  Ms Gwenllian asked ‘What action is the Welsh Government taking to deal with the cost-of-living premium facing residents in rural communities in Arfon, as highlighted in a recent report by the Bevan Foundation?’

In response, the Minister for Social Justice, Jane Hutt MS, said that:

I think it was the day after or the day I came to the Eisteddfod that this report was published, and I thought it was an excellent report

Access to justice

In questions to the Counsel General and Minister for the Constitution in plenary on 13th September, Mark Isherwood MS (Conservative) referred to the the Counsel General’s speech to the Bevan Foundation in July 2023. 

Food Banks

In questions to the Minister for Social Justice and Chief Whip on 13th September 2023, Heledd Fychan MS (Plaid Cymru) quoted the Bevan Foundation’s findings on the proportion of people skipping meals in a question about food banks. 





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