Trevor Lunn said: “I strongly welcome the publication of this manifesto and I have long campaigned for the creation of a strong and coherent early years strategy for Northern Ireland. Early intervention to assist parents and help children to go on and reach their potential is essential for our society to help grow our economy and deliver value for money in services.
“If there is a solid early years intervention policy in place, we will reap great benefits in the long term and literacy and numeracy will undoubtedly improve.
“Early years projects are vital to the community as they help give children the best start in life. We need to build for the future and early years projects provide solid foundations for so many people.”