Lyttle says there is an opportunity for parties to agree on a flags protocol

Alliance OFMDFM spokesperson Chris Lyttle has said the upcoming cross party talks are an opportunity for political parties to agree on a flags protocol after OFMDFM failed to complete their review of this protocol. His comments were made after DUP MP Jeffrey Donaldson said the current protocol was working correctly and so there was no need for any changes to be made. However, the PSNI have previously said that they will not intervene in a flags dispute unless lives are at risk.

Chris Lyttle MLA said: “The cross party talks to be led by Richard Haass will provide an opportunity for us to succeed where OFMDFM have failed, on producing an enforceable flags protocol. They have been looking to review this protocol since 2007, but they have not answered my Assembly Questions on what progress has been made.

“It is nonsense to suggest that the flags protocol is working well. I have heard from many constituents who have expressed concern about not being consulted when flags are put up outside their homes and the lack of redress that is available.

“The PSNI have indicated that they will only intervene in a flag dispute if lives are at risk. They have once again been left to hold the line due to political delay.

“The Alliance Party proposals for proper regulation of flags must be urgently considered as there is a need for some sort of an enforceable framework.

“The shared future cross party talks, which was an Alliance Party suggestion, provides an opportunity for us to resolve this issue but there must be genuine commitment to this process from all sides.”


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