Party submission on Parades, Flags and the Past

Haass and O'Sullivan
Richard Haass and Meghan O’Sullivan

‘This is about the type of society we live in

and the values we hold’

The Workers Party has presented its formal submission to the commission on Parades and protests; flags, symbols and emblems, and related matters; and the past headed up by  American diplomat Dr Richard Haass and current Harvard University professor Dr Meghan O’Sullivan.

Fundamentally different

The Party is quite clear that its approach to these issues is fundamentally different to that of that of all other parties.

The issues of parades and protests, flags and emblems are primarily political issues relating to the continuing dominance of unionist and nationalist politics and the persistence of sectarianism and segregation in Northern Ireland.

Ultimately the continuing difficulties surrounding Parades and Flags relate to the failed politics of the past, the deliberate fanning of sectarian embers to maintain a political power base and the failure to create the new order envisaged by the Good Friday Agreement.

Our approach to dealing with the issues of the past recognises those victims and their families who rightly seek the truth about what happened to their loved ones. There is a need to deliver that on their behalf.

However, we view this discussion as being about the type of society we live in and the values that society holds.

Further information

Read the Workers Party submission in full here:

Workers Party submission on Parades, Flags and the Past

For further information on the Haass Commissions see

No justification – then or now

Shankill Road bombing  1993

Shankill Road bombing 1993

Commemoration  ‘provocative, insensitive and an affront to human decency’

The Workers Party has described as “deliberately provocative, insensitive and an affront to human decency” the commemoration and unveiling of a plaque to Shankill bomber Thomas Begley.

“There can never be a justification for the public commemoration of such an act of barbarism as the blowing up of men, women and children in a local shop on a Saturday afternoon.  There was no justification for this act of mass murder at the time and there is certainly no justification now for the commemoration of those who carried it out”, the Party said.

Sectarian triumphalism

“Today’s commemoration was deliberately provocative, insensitive and an affront to human decency. Those who organised, supported and attend it have caused additional pain and suffering to the families of the bomb’s victims and have clearly signalled that they believe the atrocity to have been a legitimate part of their self-styled ‘freedom struggle’ “.

“It is now the responsibility of everyone who opposes this type of tribal, sectarian triumphalism to state that unambiguously and to isolate those who seek to continue to divide Northern Ireland society”, the statement concluded.

Tickets on sale for Andy Irvine concert

Andy Irvine

Andy Irvine

Tickets are now on sale for the Andy Irvine fundraising concert organised by the Party’s South Belfast branch.

A musical legend, Andy has been hailed as “a tradition in himself”. Musician, singer and songwriter, Andy has maintained his highly individual performing skills throughout his 45-year career.

Saturday 7 December 2013 in Cultúrlann 216 Falls Road, Belfast BT12 6AH

Andy will be supported by South Armagh vocalist Bríd Murphy.

Tickets £15. Doors open at 8pm

Booking: or phone (028) 9096 4180