Alliance Party Chief Whip Kieran McCarthy MLA has said people must judge parties’ commitment to a “Shared Future” on actions, not words – and reminded the public that the leading parties in the last NI Executive shelved plans for Shared Future policies in favour of the current segregated system.
The Strangford Assembly member stated: “It is utter nonsense for the SDLP to suggest it has even the slightest commitment to a ‘Shared Future’, when its own Deputy First Ministers shelved the relevant policy documents the whole time they had the power to do something about it.
“People need to be clear that the SDLP’s commitment to maintaining tribal designations in the Assembly proves its commitment to separation, not sharing; and to segregation, not integration.
“What we are seeing is galling hypocrisy from both Unionists and Nationalists. The SDLP talks grandly of a ‘Shared Future’, but shelves the relevant policies. Unionists talk grandly of free personal care for the elderly, but voted against the very principle when the Assembly existed.
“Monday’s event will no doubt see more grand talk about ‘working together’, but people can see through the bluster. Our society is more segregated than ever, not least because our political system remains carved up along tribal lines, and the parties which benefit from that are more willing to defend their entrenched positions than do what is right for all of us.”