Alliance questions OFDMFM commitment to racial equality

Alliance OFMDFM spokesperson, Chris Lyttle and South Belfast MLA Anna Lo, have questioned the track record of OFMDFM on racial equality at the Assembly on Monday.

Chris Lyttle MLA said: “Given the delay to the OFMDFM Racial Equality Strategy and race relations law reform, it is difficult to draw any conclusion other than that the delivery of racial equality is not a priority for OFMdFM.

“We need a Racial Equality Strategy and action plan that sets out the positive contribution of ethnic minorities in our community and tackles key inequalities in education, employment and health. We also need the long overdue delivery of race relations law reform given the unanimous decision of the Assembly in 2009 that the current Race Relations (Northern Ireland) Order does not offer the same level of protection as in other parts of the UK and Ireland.

Anna Lo MLA said: “I have been waiting over eight weeks for an Assembly question to be answered about when applications for the 2015/16 Minority Ethnic Development Fund will be called. A wide range of organisations are in the dark as to when vital funding for important work with ethnic minorities will be extended beyond the end of this financial year next week.

“I met the Junior Ministers at the Assembly on Monday to discuss how the next round of funding will be delivered.

“Alliance will continue to raise these issues with OFMDFM, in order to ensure that the action needed to build a united community for everyone in Northern Ireland is taken.”


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