The Equality Commission is to conduct an investigation into a potential breach of Equality Scheme commitments by the Department of Social Development in connection with the Housing Strategy 2012-2017 and a number of associated proposals.
Under paragraph 11 of Schedule 9 of the Northern Ireland Act 1998 the Commission is empowered to conduct an investigation where it believes that a public authority may have failed to comply with its approved Equality Scheme.
After consideration by its Statutory Duties Investigation Committee, the Commission has decided that the Department’s actions in relation to the Housing Strategy, the Building Successful Communities Programme, and the Social Housing Reform Programme may have failed to comply with the undertakings in its approved Equality Scheme in respect of screening and impact assessment.
This is not a determination of whether or not such a failure has in fact occurred – that will be decided following the Investigation.
The Equality Commission will not be commenting further until the Investigation is complete.