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About the Department

In December 1999 the Department for Social Development was established as part of the Northern Ireland Executive.
It has strategic responsibility for urban regeneration, community and voluntary sector development, social legislation, housing, social security benefits, pensions and child support.
Around 7,000 people are employed by the Department, approximately 71% of whom are located in the Social Security Agency. Public Expenditure allocation for 2013/2014 is £6,122 million, including £5,370 million Social Security Benefit Provision.
Our Mission is "Together, tackling disadvantage, building sustainable communities."
Our Vision "Helping people change their lives for the better"

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Departmental Structure

The Department comprises of two core groupings and one next steps agency:
The Department is responsible for two Executive and two non-Executive Non Departmental Public Bodies
and has oversight of

Strategic Priorities

In support of the mission statement, and to ensure a consistency of approach, the Department has three key strategic priorities:
  • To provide access to decent, affordable, sustainable homes and housing support services;
  • To meet the needs of the most vulnerable by tackling disadvantage through a transformed social welfare system, the provision of focused support to the most disadvantaged areas and encouraging social responsibility; and
  • To bring divided communities together by creating urban centres which are sustainable, welcoming and accessible to live, work and relax in peace.

Departmental Management Board

The Departmental Management Board which forms part of the Departments' Corporate Governance Framework (Word 289KB) comprises the Permanent Secretary (Chair), the Deputy Secretaries for Resources, and Social Policy Group and Urban Regeneration and Community Development Group, the Social Security Agency Chief Executive and the Director of Financial Management. There are also 2 Independent Members; Roy Keenan and Deep Sagar. Information on the Board’s remit and responsibilities can be found in the Departmental Management Board Terms of Reference section of the Corporate Governance Arrangements document.
The Board has also established a Departmental Audit and Risk Assurance Committee to support the Accounting Officer in his responsibilities with issues of risk management, control and governance; a Fraud Sub-Committee to provide strategic oversight of the Department's counter fraud activities across all spending programmes, and a Procurement Sub-Committee to provide strategic oversight of the Department's procurement activities across all areas.