SINN Féin MLA Caitriona Ruane has said that she is pleased that the ad-hoc committee formed to look at the equality and human rights provision in the Welfare Reform Bill has now met.
Ms Ruane said: “The Department of Social Development Committee in hearing evidence heard from various groups including Equality and Human Rights Commissions and these groups raised serious issues with the Bill in its current form.
“Sinn Féin insisted that these issues be addressed and called for an ad-hoc committee to be set up to examine how we ensure that Human Rights and Equality are at the core of this bill.
“This is the first time that this legislation has been used under the Good Friday Agreement I am glad that the ad-hoc committee has now met for the first time.
“The task of this committee in the next few weeks is to have a detailed and critical examination of the bill so that it complies with both Equality and Human Rights.
“Sinn Féin will continue to scrutinise this Bill line by line to make sure that the most vulnerable people in our community are protected from its worst excesses.”