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Poverty Truth and Justice Commissions

What if it was local people who effected change in local communities?

Stockton Poverty Truth Commission 'there are others in the Diocese too'

“What if people living in poverty could take the lead on challenging Stockton’s leaders to work with them to tackle poverty? Would it make a different to the decisions that are being made? Would new solutions to poverty be discovered? Would people listen and if they did, would they better understand the challenges poverty brings?”
Stockton Poverty Truth Commission

Poverty Truth Commissions are a unique and powerful way of developing new insights and initiatives to tackle poverty. Their uniqueness is derived from the fact that half of their members are people with senior roles in civic and business life, and half are people with direct, personal experience of what it is like to live in poverty in the borough or town.

The idea was developed in Glasgow and Leeds over the past six years, and as well as Stockton there are other Poverty Truth Commissions in the Durham Diocese too.

The key principle behind Poverty Truth Commissions is that decisions must involve people who have experienced poverty first-hand. The aim is to ensure that these people are at the heart of the decisions being made to tackle poverty and inequality.

The commissions have three active work streams:

  • Frustrations of a Job Seeker
  • Mental Health
  • Additional costs associated with the school day.

Communities Together Durham supports the Poverty Truth Commission and we are actively involved in the Mental Health group.