Ellen Finlay is Policy & Development Manager at the Samaritans. She is a skilled public affairs strategist with a proven track record of navigating complex political landscapes and building productive relationships with policymakers. Her background is in social policy, her professional interests encompass social inclusion and effective community consultation and engagement.
Ellen has championed issues surrounding food poverty and insecurity, child poverty, and women’s lack of engagement in policy. She has successfully lobbied for direct payment for Free School Meals during Covid-19 and played an instrumental role in getting the Children’s Services Co-operation Act through to Royal Ascent.
As a Commissioner for the Equality Commission for Northern Ireland, Ellen has leveraged her expertise to develop public affairs strategies that drive positive change. She has also served as a member of the Independent Mechanism for Northern Ireland, the Department of Health Hyponatraemia Implementation Programme Workstream Two, and as deputy Chair of the Joint Forum (VCS panel).
Additionally, Ellen was a member of the co-design group that developed an Anti-Poverty Strategy and a Disability Strategy for the Department for Communities.