Dickson expresses concern on timescale for social value legislation

East Antrim Alliance MLA, Stewart Dickson, has expressed his concern that a Social Value Act may not be passed into law by the end of this Assembly Term.

Mr Dickson commented after asking the Finance Minister on the matter in the Assembly.

Mr Dickson said: “A Social Value Act has been on the agenda for years, and the Department of Finance even agreed to take on a Private Members Bill that was originally in my name, with promises to try and improve on it. Unfortunately, the collapse of the Assembly in 2017 saw that legislation fall away.

“I am therefore disappointed that the Finance Minister has not committed to taking forward such legislation in this current mandate which ends in 2022. He has stated that there is limited time left, but I believe that this can be achieved, as the Bill was previously prepared, and similar legislation has been passed in other jurisdictions.

As Chair of the All Party Group on Social Enterprise, I will continue to press for progress on this long overdue social value legislation. I believe that social value should be a top consideration when spending public money, supporting communities and the economy.”