Londoners came together on Thursday to get an update on the report that’s meant to help end poverty in the Forest City.
City officials held the meeting to talk about the early roll-out of some of the 112 recommendations from “London for All,” the document produced by the Mayor’s Advisory Panel on Poverty following six months of work and consultations.
The City’s Lynne Livingstone noted reaching out to the community has been key.
“People living with that experience have not actually been asked what some of the solutions should be, and so what we learned through ‘London for All’ is how critical that part is, and that some of what contributes to poverty are systemic barriers, and so needing to change that are actually having the very people who are effected be in decision making roles,” she said.
Livingstone adds that as they enact the recommendations from the report, it’s crucial the community has input.
“The report had listed a series of principles, the first one was that people with lived experience should be key decision makers in the implementation of this work, and that was absolutely affirmed in our conversations with the community,” Livingstone said.
Officials say from June through August, staff held conversations with Londoners with lived experience with poverty, service providers, and other interested community members to understand the best approach to implementation.
There are 27 recommendations that the panel hopes will be implemented within 12 months of the document being made public. Those range from grow existing awareness and engagement initiatives, to increasing the number of licensed childcare spaces.
The panel was only assigned to make recommendations, so they’ve proposed an implementation body is formed to carry the work forward.
Meantime, Ward 6 Councillor Phil Squire said he thinks a new campaign to raise awareness about poverty in London misses the mark.
Squire is questioning City Hall’s decision to spend $41,000 on the “Poverty over London” campaign that has gone up on billboards across the city.
In a Facebook post, Squire said he supports efforts to reduce poverty in London, but thinks the money could have been better spent than on an advertising campaign.
Squire said he wishes the money was being used to actually help with poverty.
He noted the money was actually approved by the previous council and isn’t connected to the Mayor’s Poverty Panel.
However, it was highlighted in Thursday’s update on the work of the Poverty Panel as a success of the campaign.
Squire will be a panelist on the Friday Roundtable at 11a.m. on the Craig Needles Show.