East Belfast Alliance MLA Chris Lyttle said: “Findings of an OFMdFM commissioned Deloitte Report in 2007, that division costs our society around £1billion per year, were a clear warning and made public under a freedom of information request from the Alliance Party.
“This report is yet another wake-up call and confirmation that meaningful action to tackle segregation and build a shared future must be the highest Executive priority.
“The report has found that the overwhelming majority of people in Northern Ireland have a preference to live in mixed neighbourhoods; yet around 90% of social housing remains segregated and 90% of children are separated into Catholic and Protestant schooling. Fundamental institutional and community level change is needed if any of the positive words and gestures we have seen recently are to deliver change.
“The government policy for building good relations, the Cohesion, Sharing & Integration Strategy, is an opportunity that must not be missed to set out clear aims and actions that the Executive will take to tackle division and build a truly shared Northern Ireland for all.”