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How We Talk About Poverty Matters

We know high levels of shame and stigma are felt by people living in poverty and that this reduces willingness to socialise and contributes to poorer mental health and reduced job opportunities. One of the key messages from Abigail Scott-Paul’s stimulating keynote address to the 2019 ACOSS Conference in late November was that improving the way we talk about poverty publicly can improve the lives of people living in poverty.  Abigail is leading the work of the UK’s Joseph Rowntree Foundation to reframe the way they communicate poverty information to increase public and political will to take action to solve it.

See Pro Bono We can’t rely on the stats,” 27/11/19 and Canberra Times, 1/12/19. You can also watch Abigail’s keynote to ACOSS Conference How can we talk about poverty to win hearts and minds to solve it?  A copy of her slides are available on request to

You can find out more about what they’re doing on their Talking about poverty website and see the APW guide on How We Talk About Poverty.